Truckee couple spreads the word about hunger
Last Sunday, Denny and Edie Lott led 28 members of the Truckee Lutheran Presbyterian Church in a letter-writing campaign urging U.S. Sens. Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein to support president Bush’s promise to fund AIDS programs in Africa.
On hand was a production crew from 42 Degrees North to film the Lotts for a video produced by Bread for the World – a grassroots ecumenical Christian citizens lobby which advocates for passage of legislation that affects hungry people worldwide.
The Lotts were selected from among Bread for the World’s 48,000 members because of their dedication to hunger advocacy. The “2004 Offering of Letters” video will be used by the organization to inspire other churches in their letter-writing campaigns next year.
Truckee-residents Edie and Denny Lott have been passionate about hunger issues for more than 20 years. Every year they participate in letter-writing campaigns to local, state and federal elected officials asking them to support aid programs for needy people both at home and abroad. They have also developed skits that they present at churches throughout California designed to educate congregation members about hunger issues.
The current campaign seeks to ensure that U.S. leaders fulfill their promise to provide money to poor African nations that are trying to stop the spread of AIDS and end the cycle of debilitating poverty that has brought about the epidemic.
“Our main purpose right now is to ensure that our congressional leaders fulfill their promises to fully fund the Millennium Challenge Account,” Denny said.
“The plight of AIDS in Africa is so serious. About 6,800 people die daily of AIDS in Africa, which is twice as many as died on September 11th – and we’re talking about every day,” Edie added.
The Lotts believe that Sunday’s turnout for the Bread for the World Offering of Letters was a sign that people in the Truckee community care about poor people throughout the world, not just in their own backyard.
A broad spectrum of the Truckee Lutheran Presbyterian Church community took part in the letter-writing campaign. The youngest participant was only 9 years old, while the oldest was 92.
Both Denny and Edie Lott became involved in the fight to end hunger after personally experiencing its effects. Edie went on a mission to Tijuana upon which she saw a young girl who lived in an orphanage there because her mother could not afford to feed her.
“Looking at that child … made me vow that I will put time and energy and passion into fighting hunger until there are no more children who can’t live with their mothers because they can’t feed them,” Edie said.
Denny tells a similar story about a student in a class he was teaching in Stockton who opened his eyes to the fact that hunger doesn’t just affect people in foreign countries or far away places.
Currently, both Denny and Edie teach for the Washoe County School District, making the commute to Reno from their home in Glenshire.
The Lotts care deeply about local hunger relief measures as well. They have been senate hunger leaders for the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America for a number of years – a position that allows them to put on hunger education workshops throughout Northern California and Northern Nevada.
The Lotts have also worked with Project MANA, helping to address the nutritional needs of those in the Truckee community.
Living in Truckee has given the Lotts plenty of opportunities to pursue their love of outdoor activities such as mountain biking and back-country skiing, while at the same time maintaining a connection to global issues through their letter-writing and advocacy work.
More information about Bread for the World’s mission and letter-writing campaigns can be found at http://www.bread.org.
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