DOWNTOWN — The AARP Foundation launched an online effort Thursday to raise money to help feed impoverished or incapacitated older people in Los Angeles and Orange counties.

The “Around the Corner Hunger” campaign — aroundthecornerhunger.org — is aimed at raising $100,000 by Dec. 31 to distribute to community food banks and hunger relief organizations, including Meals on Wheels West in Santa Monica.

Donations can be made by credit card via the website. MetLife Foundation will make a 100 percent match for all donations up to $100,000.

“For more than 50 years, AARP has been focused on helping older Americans age with dignity and comfort,” said David Pacheco, president of AARP California. “Combining our efforts with the purchasing power of local hunger relief organizations, AARP Foundation is driving donations to where they can have the biggest impact for struggling older Americans.”

Research done at the AARP Foundation showed that about 8 percent of older Californians are at risk of going hungry. The foundation’s nationwide effort, dubbed Drive to End Hunger, has supplied about 3.5 million meals though local hunger relief groups.

Meals on Wheels West is currently reaching out to the community to identify more homebound residents in need of a free, hot dinner, especially on Thanksgiving.

The local social service agency has the resources to take on more clients. Those who need assistance should call (310) 394-5133, or visit www.mealsonwheelswest.org.

kevinh@www.smdp.com

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