First Lady Laura Bush on Thursday encouraged football fans to spare $1 from their Super Bowl party budgets to help fight hunger and poverty.
“Today we invite every American to take action,” Bush said, addressing youth volunteers at the Capital Area Food Bank in Washington. “Let us transform Super Bowl Weekend into the biggest weekend of compassion in this country.”
Bush kicked off the 2004 Souper Bowl of Caring, a yearly charity drive started by a youth church group in Columbia, S.C., which has raised more than $20 million since 1990.
Members of the Senior High Youth Fellowship of the Spring Valley Presbyterian Church in Columbia encouraged parishioners to donate $1 to local charities. Last year, 12,000 schools and congregations across the country were involved and generated $3.5 million.
The volunteers are on a 10-day, 10-city bus tour to recruit schools and faith-based organizations to contribute in time for the Super Bowl.
They stopped Wednesday in Philadelphia. After Washington, they will visit Baltimore; Raleigh, N.C.; Charlotte, N.C.; Columbia, S.C., Jacksonville, Tenn.; Mobile, Ala.; New Orleans; and Houston, site of the game.
Also on Thursday, Bush hosted the 10th annual National Awards for Museum and Library Service in the East Room of the White House.
The libraries and museums that received $10,000 for excellence and innovation in community enrichment and outreach were: the USS Constitution Museum in Boston; Bozeman Public Library in Bozeman, Mont.; Carnegie Science Center in Pittsburgh, Pa.; Free Library of Philadelphia; San Angelo Museum of Fine Arts in San Angelo, Texas; and the Pocahontas County Free Libraries in Marlinton, W.Va.