Audrey Giuliano of North Reading, MA, clearly remembers her first Walk for Hunger. Intrigued by Project Bread’s mission to reduce hunger within Massachusetts, Audrey joined her 18-year-old granddaughter, Natalie Long Kanner, in 1998 for her first walk.
Although they only walked four miles and raised a few hundred of dollars, Audrey was proud to do her part. She realized that “just trying to help a little bit” had the potential to make a huge difference in someone else’s life. This fulfillment from “just trying to help a little bit” has motivated Audrey to participate and fundraise for the Walk over the past 18 years. Through social media, Audrey reaches out to friends, family, and old co-workers. Audrey says that she is constantly surprised by the generosity of some of her responders. Recently, a friend of her husband, who has lived in California for 40 years, saw Audrey’s Facebook post, asking that people support her Walk, and she sent Audrey $100. Audrey was touched. “She isn’t someone I would normally ask,” admitted Audrey, “It just blew my mind away.”
As a Walker for nearly two decades, Audrey has seen many positive changes with the Walk for Hunger, year after year. She recalls that during her earlier Walks, Walkers were mostly younger people. “Now,” she said, “you see people of all ages participating, from moms pushing babies in a stroller, to people over the age of 65; it’s incredible.” For the last seven years, Audrey has walked side by side with her granddaugher Julianne and her friend Sam. "One year," Audrey reflects, "Sam was almost six months pregnant and insisted on walking the whole twenty miles. I was quite proud of both of them."
Audrey continues to be determined to help hungry children. As a grandmother of 14 grandchildren and soon to be eight great-grandchildren, she says, “I can’t even begin to imagine seeing one of my grandchildren go hungry.” She supports Project Bread’s programs that ensure children around the state have access to healthy, nutritious food where they live and learn. Almost 80 years old, Audrey has a spirit that remains as formidable as ever. She declared proudly, “As long as I can, I’m going to continue to walk.”