Away From Work
Welcome to “Away From Work,” a new feature on how members of the operations team spend their time outside of the job. Whether it’s volunteering with a nonprofit, pursuing a personal passion, or some other interesting outlet, our coworkers have fascinating stories to share.
A.J. Young and LIFEWorks
Name: A.J. Young
UVA Job: Meter Technician, Facilities Management Department
Time at UVA: 15 years
Away From Work: Addressing food insecurity in the Staunton, Augusta County, Waynesboro area
During the Covid-19 pandemic, A.J. Young and his wife, Adrienne, started feeding people in need in their community, which grew into “LIFEworks,” a nonprofit based in Waynesboro. The organization now delivers meals to 135 people and offers micro-grants for utility bills, day care, and other necessities to help people get back on their feet. And the operation recently expanded again. On Oct. 7, A.J. and Adrienne opened River City Bread Basket, a client-choice food pantry in Waynesboro that reduces food waste while helping those in need. River City Bread Basket accepts food donations from residents, local restaurants and merchants that it makes available to anyone in need. Unlike some food pantries, River City Bread Basket allows its clients to choose whatever they would like as though it was a traditional grocery store. It operates extended evening and weekend hours and hosts educational programming on nutrition.
The passion: “I believe that this is a transformative endeavor and can change the way we approach food insecurity,” A.J. said. “We’re just trying to make a little bit of headway and lift the community. My wife and I want this to be something that outlasts us.”
For more information or to sponsor an item or volunteer, read more at www.thelifeworksproject.org.