Former President George H.W. Bush joined President Barack Obama on Monday to honor the 5,000th recipient of the Points of Light Award.
Points of Light is the largest organization dedicated to volunteer service; the Daily Point of Light Award was founded by George H.W. Bush to honor volunteers every weekday of the year, including holidays.
The 5000th recipients are Floyd Hammer and Kathy Hamilton, retired Iowans and farm owners, who founded a nonprofit to deliver free meals to hungry children in more than 15 countries, including the U.S.
“About 10 years ago Floyd Hammer and Kathy Hamilton were getting ready to retire,” Obama said. “They had been farming for years. They had earned a break.”
A trip to Tanzania changed all that, he said. They saw children dying of malnutrition. “Having seen this, Kathy and Floyd simply had to do something about it so their vision of a leisurely retirement was replaced by a new mission—fighting global hunger.”
Their organization, Outreach, has assembled and distributed 232 million meals to children around the world.
“So far!” Hamilton said with a grin.
Bush donned candy-cane striped red and white socks for the ceremony; his son, Neil Bush, chairman of the Points of Light organization, laughed at his dad’s characteristically bold socks.
“GQ man, we’re calling him, instead of 41,” he said.
Obama also used the occasion to announce a new federal task force, that will work to partner public and private sector organizations to accomplish the administration’s priorities, just as Points of Life has furthered the work on Bush’ international priorities.
For more on Outreach, visit http://www.outreachprogram.org.