Letter from the Chair
For AARP Foundation, 2010 was an accomplishment-filled blend of the tried and the
new. As it has done for years, the Foundation helped millions of low-income older
people prepare their taxes, secure benefits and find jobs. The year also saw a major
realignment of our work and mission.
AARP Foundation is one of the leading organizations that champions low-income older
people. Given our critical role and the rapid growth of the 50+ population, it is essential
we operate effectively to meet the needs of those we serve. Research made possible by a
grant from Atlantic Philanthropies identified two top priorities for the Foundation: First,
helping low-income older people meet their basic needs; and second, shining a spotlight on the problems of poverty and aging in the U.S.
In June, AARP Foundation Board of Directors hired Jo Ann Jenkins as our new president
and asked that she begin a strategic planning process for the Foundation. In July, the
Board unanimously adopted her planning team’s recommendations:
•;A new vision: A country that is free of poverty where no older person feels
•;A new mission: The Foundation is dedicated to serving vulnerable people 50+ by
creating solutions that help them secure the essentials and live their best life.
•;Four essential focus areas: hunger, housing, income and isolation.
Rather than spread our resources equally (and too thinly) across all four areas, we are
concentrating on hunger first. In late fall, we launched, in collaboration with AARP,
a multi-year nationwide commitment to solve the problem of hunger among older
Americans—Drive to End Hunger.
Key campaign elements include raising national awareness of the issue and and generating resources to help solve the problem. We will work with national and community
partners to feed hungry older Americans; educate and enroll eligible older Americans in
SNAP/food stamps; further research on the causes and consequences of senior hunger;
and collaborate to develop sustainable solutions. All proceeds from Drive to End
Hunger will support AARP Foundation’s hunger solutions.
Meanwhile, we remain flexible, vigilant and committed to responding to crises, protecting the legal rights of older Americans and supporting programs that have served
millions of struggling seniors so well.
We are now poised to do bigger and better things at AARP Foundation. We hope you
will continue to join us in making life better for the millions of vulnerable, low-income
seniors. On their behalf, and on ours, thank you.