It's an American sandwich staple, and now the Jefferson Area Board for Aging is trying to stock seniors' shelves with a delicious spread: peanut butter.
It's in high demand for JABA's Food Bag program. Organizers are trying to collect nearly 100 cans for this month's charity drive.
Once a month, JABA teams up with the Blue Ridge Area Food Bank and the Church of the Incarnation to deliver food to seniors in need. During the most recent donation, volunteers noticed a lack of protein in the bags.
"It's not possible for these folks to get out, especially if the weather is bad. They're counting on these bags to get them through tough times," said Annie Hilten, the volunteer services administrator for JABA. "Their incomes are fixed, tight, and we're looking forward to putting protein in their bags," she said.
So volunteers came up with a solution to the protein deficit: peanut butter. They said other sources of protein like beans and cans of tuna fish were also good options, but peanut butter seemed perfect.
"You open the jar up, you use it once, and you close the jar, put it back on the shelf and you can count on it the next day or the next week or a month," Hilten said.
Organizers say the Food Bag program serves 88 to over 100 seniors each month. They say they're always accepting donations, and they're also looking for volunteers as well.
AARP is also sponsoring a food drive through Friday to help stock up the shelves of area food banks. Click here for a list of donation sites.