Mary Ann Fletcher of Durham is the Executive Admin for Burt’s Bees, and their team lead for Inter-Faith Food Shuttle. She talks about why Burt’s Bees employees have been volunteering with IFFS for the past four years – both at Tryon Road Teaching Farm and with our BackPack Buddies program.
Tell us about your first-ever time volunteering with IFFS.
I love farms and animals so the first time I volunteered I was extremely excited and happy. We planted seeds for leafy green vegetables, collected eggs, and made friends with the goats. Knowing that I was helping others was also very special.
There are numerous different places to volunteer in the Triangle. Why IFFS?
Burt’s Bees was looking for an outreach partner to volunteer for, whose purpose was to help out the surrounding community with organic food and sustainable gardening. For me it was knowing that I was helping many communities doing some of the things that I love – producing sustainable crops and working with animals. If you want to really feel that you are making a difference in the lives of many people and enjoy being outdoors, IFFS is the place to go. There is something for everyone to do on the farm.
Describe a moment while volunteering with IFFS that felt very rewarding.
One of the highlights of volunteering for the farm on an individual basis was working with groups of children who were there volunteering. They were sponges for information. The highlight of their day was sifting through worm compost and pulling out all of the worms to place them back in the compost bin so they could create more. Seeing the excitement and smiles on those little faces was wonderful.
What's the most fun you ever had volunteering with the Food Shuttle?
Our group from Burt’s Bees was at an event at the farm and I was teaching them to move the goats from one area to another. Some of our group members were not as much of an animal lover as I am so I had to do double duty and shied them away from the goats. I found it very entertaining but in the end I entertained them the most by falling flat on my backside in the mud trying to get all the goats in the pen. Everyone had so much fun that day.
If you would like to volunteer with IFFS, click here to get started!