We need volunteers!

There is no denying the holidays will look different this year. 

Volunteering can be a wonderful way to restore hope for ourselves and for others. At a time when much of what is happening in the world feels outside of our control, we can lean in to the small acts that make a big difference. 

We rely on the support of more than 1,000 dedicated volunteers each month to sustain the fight against hunger. The gifts born from acts of service are priceless, just ask Maggie Petersen, who is one of the Food Bank’s loyal volunteers. 

“If you are thinking about volunteering somewhere, and the issue of hunger touches your heart, consider the Food Bank. This is a place where it truly does take a village of volunteers and staff working together everyday to address food insecurity. There are a variety of volunteer opportunities.”

Maggie joined the Food Bank’s “Wednesday Regulars” in 2006 and now performs several functions, including an ongoing role on the “Boxing Team” and Tuesday stints dedicated to sorting and packaging donated baby food.

Maggie chooses to donate her time to the Food Bank because the mission appeals to her and the work is rewarding. “There is so much food insecurity in the communities we serve. I feel good knowing that our efforts directly affect people’s quality of life. I’ve met some really neat people, and enjoy interacting with my fellow volunteers and Food Bank staff. Plus, for me, it’s fun!”

She and other volunteers spend each shift packaging anywhere between 400-1,200 boxes. “The food that goes into these boxes is purchased by the Food Bank, generally weighs about 30 pounds each, and contains staples such as cereal, canned fruits and vegetables, peanut butter, tomato products, pasta, beans, etc.,” explains Maggie.

COVID-19 has caused a dramatic spike in demand, with the number of individuals we serve each month skyrocketing from 178,000 to 270,000. That’s why we need volunteers now more than ever. If you’re looking for a way to help heal your community, fill time, and feed families this holiday season, visit foodbankccs.org/volunteer for a breakdown of available opportunities and to learn about our COVID-19 Volunteer Safety Protocols.

Registration is required; you can sign up for one shift or become a regular volunteer. No training is necessary, just a kind heart and giving spirit!

Originally published by Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano: Source