Meet Janet: a kind, dedicated, and cheerful local food bank volunteer who has served at Blessings of Hope for an incredible 6 years now. She was originally introduced to Blessings of Hope by her oldest daughter when she lived within a mile of a previous location.
Janet loves connecting with people. Over the past 6 years she has made a lot of friends among the volunteers and staff and enjoys coming by to see everyone. She makes it a point to introduce herself to new staff members when she sees someone she hasn’t met yet. Her grandson is one of the Blessings of Hope staff so she likes to check in on him when she stops by. Her favorite local food bank volunteer to work with is a kind and cheerful young man in a wheelchair. She helps him with the work and to select food after their shift.
Janet is very passionate about the mission and impact of Blessings of Hope. She appreciates that food, otherwise wasted, is now going to those who need it, or composted when unfit to eat, promoting food reproduction or providing disaster and hunger relief to many hurting people.
She smiled, as she was thinking about how Blessings of Hope grew over the years which led to more outreaches in other states and highlighted how people have traveled from Indiana and other distant locations to learn how to host these outreaches in their area the way Blessings of Hope did.
Janet was a volunteer at our facility before we had staff volunteer coordinators. She appreciates how the setup is more organized now and that small children can only volunteer on family friendly shifts, which keeps the noise down and contributes to the organization and productivity of a volunteer shift.
We thank you, Janet, for your heart of gold, your service to the community, and your contribution to the loving volunteer atmosphere at Blessings of Hope!
What is it like to be a local food bank volunteer at Blessings of Hope
Stories like Janet’s energize our mission. We couldn’t do what we do without our dedicated local food bank volunteers. Every individual makes a difference to bring hope to the hungry, hopeless, or hurting.
Our volunteers work on a variety of projects including cleaning, photography, packing food boxes via assembly line, driving truck, maintenance, repackaging bulk foods into more manageable sizes; and sorting through skids of produce. Recently, volunteers also made a few trips to Kauffman Orchards in Lancaster County to pick peaches that would have otherwise gone to waste. It was an incredible experience for all. One volunteer couple was from Arizona, and decided to help out while in the area. Another volunteer used to own an orchard so he was lending guidance on the picking and packing process.
At our fundraiser events we also rely on volunteers to help with the success of the event. Our annual iCare event in 2021 took approximately 1,000 – 1,500 preparation and coordination hours and about 250 – 300 event volunteers to host about 2500+ people who attended and supported our mission.
On average, we schedule about 65 local food bank volunteers per shift with about 15 shifts per week. That is an average of 2,438 volunteer hours, equivalent to 61 full time workers per week. Our operation couldn’t function without those dedicated volunteer hours! Skids and skids of food are taken care of every day for local organizations and partnerships in other states and countries.
Our Family Friendly shifts are Monday morning from 8:30 to 11:00, Friday afternoon from 12:30 to 3:00, and Friday evening from 6:30 to 9:00. They are open to children of all ages and include products that are easier for younger children to work with. In conjunction with work projects, we occasionally have an arts and crafts table with fun activities for the youngest ones to enjoy. Our normal shifts restrict children ages 9 and under, including babies.
If you are looking for Lancaster volunteer opportunities visit our website.
Contact us with any questions.
Donate if you believe in our mission to serve the hungry, hopeless or hurting.