AvalonBay Employees, Residents Participate in ‘Make A Difference Day’

By Anuradha Kher, Online News EditorAlexandria, Va.–Several thousand residents, staff and management of AvalonBay apartment communities all across the U.S. recently participated in “Make a Difference Day,” a national day of service sponsored by USA Weekend.AvalonBay’s corporate office in Alexandria, Va. planned and organized a range of activities throughout the company’s residential communities nationwide. AvalonBay contributed with their time, energy and talents to improve the quality of life in its neighborhoods, towns and counties. AvalonBay CEO Bryce Blair says, “This was a wonderful weekend of sharing AvalonBay’s spirit of caring in many of our communities across the country. It has been terrific to see the community spirit and the desire to make a difference shown by our residents, staff and the civic-minded organizations they worked with, side by side.”AvalonBay-sponsored projects covered a wide variety of volunteer activities from blood drives to neighborhood cleanups as well as repairing the homes of the elderly and infirm in 10 cities across the nation. For example, in Lexington, Mass., residents of Avalon at Lexington Hills joined staff and local officials to raise money for local schools. In San Francisco, Avalon Mission Bay North residents, staff and volunteers organized an auction of valuable sports memorabilia to benefit the local YMCA. In Long Island, N.Y., staff and residents cleaned up a local beach in Eatons Neck.In New York City, Avalon Riverview staff and residents organized a neighborhood cleanup, clothing and food drive. The residents and volunteers spent the day clearing trash from the streets in Long Island City, Queens, and contributed over 1,500 items of food and clothing for HELP USA, a local non-profit. The New York City Department of Sanitation awarded Avalon Riverview a Cleaner New York Certificate.Speaking about the day, Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton said, “Make a Difference Day is a very special event that, once a year, brings people across the country together, volunteering on behalf of their fellow citizens and communities. It is gratifying to see such a remarkable level of community involvement and public service by so many, and it is a testament to the caring spirit of Americans everywhere.”  She went on to say, “I commend AvalonBay for its determination to improve the communities in which they work. I encourage everyone to look to the example of the thousands of Americans from coast to coast who, on ‘Make a Difference Day,’ reached out to their neighbors and made their communities better places in which to live.”At San Diego’s Avalon Mission Bay, over 60 residents and staff volunteers carried out a book drive, fundraiser and painting project on behalf of Crown Point Elementary School. The initiative donated 520 books and raised approximately $1,000 for the repainted school in a day filled with live music and refreshments. And a food drive at Avalon Traville in North Potomac, Md. drive gathered over 1,000 items of food from residents and staff for Manna Food Center, which provides food assistance to nearly 2,000 needy households each month.(Pictured: AvalonBay HQ volunteers outside a home they rebuilt in Alexandria.)