Mason Collects Food, Gifts for Less Fortunate

Posted: November 10, 2010 at 1:03 am, Last Updated: November 9, 2010 at 5:46 pm

A longstanding Mason tradition is to collect food and other items to make the holidays brighter for the hungry and less fortunate. Following are the plans announced to date.

Arlington Campus

  • The Arlington Campus is partnering with the Arlington Food Assistance Center (AFAC) to collect canned items, cereal, pasta and peanut butter. Collection bins are in the following locations: Hazel Hall, front and rear atrium; Original Building, Second floor lobby and Grad Central Station; Truland Building,  First floor lobby and garage vestibule. Delivery to AFAC will take place on Nov. 18. Last year, the Arlington Campus collected 619 pounds of food, and this year the goal is to double that amount.

Fairfax Campus

  • Mason Dining is conducting a canned food drive and offering collection boxes for Mason offices during the week of Nov. 15–19. Only nonperishable food items and canned goods should be collected. To request a box and for more details, contact Daliana Gandarillas at or 703-993-3407.
  • The Center for Leadership and Community Engagement (CLCE) is collaborating with the Fairfax County consolidated giving program coordinated through local nonprofit Our Daily Bread. CLCE is asking that you provide a gift for each child, warm clothing and a holiday food basket. Gift cards to local food stores to supplement the food baskets are also needed. Last year, individuals and departments contributed food and gifts to make the holidays brighter for 65 individuals in our community. If you are unable to donate but would like to volunteer, CLCE is seeking drivers to deliver the baskets to families on Saturday, Dec. 4 between 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. To participate, e-mail Desiree Rohrig,
  • CLCE is also partnering with the Global Hunger Banquet on Thursday, Nov. 18, from 6 to 8 p.m. in the Johnson Center Dewberry Hall South. Admission is $3 or three cans of food. Contact Amy Reagan at for more details.
  • Toys for Tots was started in 1947 by Marine Major Bill Hendricks. It has become a national program that every year delivers toys to needy children during the holiday season. This year, the Office of Military Services at Mason is sponsoring Toys for Tots. The drop-off location for donations is in the Office of Military Services (Admissions Office, Johnson Center, Second Floor). Cash donations are also accepted, with 100 percent of donations going toward the purchase of toys for needy children. Toys must be unwrapped and suitable for children. For further information, contact Aaron Emery at 703-993-8243 or

Mason at Loudoun

  • November is Hunger/Homelessness Action Month at Loudoun. A month-long canned food and clothing drive to benefit a local food bank and shelter is ongoing in Mason in Loudoun’s Grand Foyer.

Prince William Campus

  • The Prince William Campus has a Be a Santa to a Senior service program ongoing through Dec. 3 to brighten the lives of hundreds of needy or lonely seniors in the City of Manassas and Prince William County this year. Area agencies have provided the names of lonely or financially challenged seniors, along with suggested gift ideas. Each senior will be recognized with an ornament listing their name and suggested gift item. To participate: Remove an ornament from the Be a Santa to a Senior tree located in the Occoquan Building lobby (gift ideas are printed on each ornament). Purchase the gift(s) listed. Bring the ornament and gift by Dec. 3 to the Occoquan Building, Room 217F, Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Wrapping parties will be held on Dec. 6 and 8. Gifts will be delivered to area seniors by mid-December.

  • The Prince William Campus community recently completed collecting food for an emergency need for SERVE Inc. The food delivered to SERVE totaled 1,423 pounds. Cathy Ryan spearheaded this project. Molly Grove, Rick Holt, Pennie O’Brien, Paul Wieber and Mike Ryan collected and delivered the food to SERVE.

Please send news of other Mason holiday giving programs to for later reports.

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