Build Community & Inspire Change During National Volunteer Month
National Volunteer Month provides opportunities for the entire family to support the community
April in National Volunteer Month — a time when we celebrate and honor the people who dedicate themselves to taking action and support their community. The month-long celebration is about inspiring, recognizing and encouraging people to seek out imaginative ways to engage in their communities. By working together, we can meet our challenges and accomplish all of our goals.
One of the best aspects of volunteering is that there are so many different reasons to get involved. It’s a fun opportunity to meet new people, network and gain new working skills. It’s also a great way to help an organization that aligns with your personal values and beliefs. Most importantly, volunteering is the best way to support your community.
At The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts, we rely on the continued efforts of our volunteers to help us provide healthy food to the more than 235,000 people in our region struggling with food insecurity. We asked some of our volunteers why they donate their time to us. Here’s what they had to say:
“It’s a great way to start the week, by helping others in need.”
“I feel making a difference is important.”
“I like making people smile.”
“It feels good to know that I am making a difference in people’s lives.”
Regardless of your age, gender, work experience, or skills, there are many different ways that you can contribute your time to The Food Bank. With a number of opportunities available, there’s sure to be one that’s perfect for everyone:
- Sorting food for distribution.
- Assisting staff at a fundraising event (such as our Gala, or Will Bike 4 Food).
- Tabling at a third-party event, providing visitors with information about The Food Bank.
- Working with our nutrition staff to prepare food samples, or assisting with education workshops.
- Working with our SNAP Outreach team by helping people apply for assistance.
- Assisting with set-up and distribution at a Brown Bag: Food for Elders location.
- Providing basic office support for any one of our departments.
- Many more …
Your entire family can take the first steps towards supporting your community, and find out just how much fun volunteering can be. The Food Bank and Hilltown Families are holding a special Family Volunteer Day at our Hatfield facility on Saturday, April 18. Participating families will have the opportunity to learn about hunger in our region, as well as helping to prepare food to be distributed to pantries and meal sites across Western Massachusetts. To learn more about this event and how your family can participate, check out the post, The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts & Hilltown Families present Family Volunteer Days!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Chris Wojcik is the Marketing & Communications Manager at The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts. The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts is committed to feeding our neighbors in need and leading the community to end hunger. Founded in 1982, The Food Bank is the leading provider of emergency food that reaches individuals and families in Berkshire, Franklin, Hampshire and Hampden counties. From their warehouse in Hatfield, they distribute food to their member agencies (which include food pantries, meal sites and shelters) throughout the region. They continue to build a stronger community through a variety of initiatives, including our Mobile Food Bank, SNAP outreach, nutrition education, and our Brown Bag: Food for Elders program.