How can we even begin to say “thank you” to the people who do so much? ach April during National Volunteer Week, we are grateful to take time to recognize the amazing power of our volunteer force. This year, we tried to really do it up right, with activities throughout the week, including Open Houses at all of the Ag locations, breakfast & lunch provided by Catering With a Cause, and a host of volunteer awards!
Sallie Simpson helps with the Farm Stand most Saturdays and serves as culinary instructor for the Cooking Matters classes that are held at Urban Ministries. “Every person in the class realized tangible improvement by the end of the class... one of the doctors in the Open Door Clinic ...told me that the class would practically dance down the hall as they left the class each day!”
Tell us about your first-ever time volunteering with IFFS.
It was a cold, sleeting day in February – we were raking rocks out of a newly plowed field and spreading mulch. Everyone was so nice and we laughed so much that I decided to keep coming back!
Describe a volunteer moment that felt very rewarding.
Last spring I co-led a Cooking Matters class at Urban Ministries with Ana Cardia, and we had such a motivated class – each participant had been sent to class by their doctor for diet-related conditions. Every person in the class realized tangible improvement by the end of the class and one of the doctors in the Open Door Clinic at Urban Ministries told me that the class would practically dance down the hall as they left the class each day!
What would you say to recruit a friend to volunteer with IFFS?I would tell people that this is a great place to volunteer – the people are wonderful to work with. There is a lot of work, and lots of fun as well!
Kathy, Bob & Bill are all retired and living in Raleigh. On Wednesday mornings they run the Food Recovery & Distribution Downtown Route as “The Dream Team.” They didn’t know each other until Volunteer Manager Dalia Place put them together on a truck. Now they are a Wednesday institution, enjoying their time on the truck discussing politics, Virginia Tech and the ACC!
Kathy Jenkins has been volunteering with IFFS for about four years. She helped during Mediathons and as an FRD route Assistant. Before she retired and moved to Raleigh she had driven a school bus on occasion, now Kathy is a driver for the Downtown Route.
“It is fulfilling to provide agencies with the things they need. The Raleigh Rescue Mission is always so happy with the fresh produce we provide!”—Kathy Jenkins
Bob Perry first started working with the Food Shuttle nearly 20 years ago! Since retiring from IBM about 18 months ago, he has committed to giving IFFS one day/week. Initially he was a Driver’s Assistant with our staff Driver Eric Harrison, now he enjoys his Wednesdays with the Dream Team.
“I like getting to know the people at each agency and all the good work they do for the community!”—Bob Perry
Bill Finger is the newcomer to the group. He has been volunteering for about one year. He was retired and looking for a place to contribute when he learned about the Food Shuttle through a church member.
“The three of us have a nice camaraderie and division of duties worked out. We are like a well-oiled 3-on-3 basketball team!”—Bill Finger
All three recommend volunteering on an IFFS team as a great way to spend time with old friends … or make new ones!
Get to know Ana Cardia! She's a Nutritionist who volunteers with our Nutrition Education team, teaching Cooking Matters classes.
"It was really rewarding to see how the work I put in at IFFS was making an impact out in the community."
"I’ve never volunteered at a place where the staff were so welcoming, the participants were so excited, and the programs were so fun!" -Meghan Dempsey
"On that Saturday morning, we were doing a lot more than simply handing out free produce and groceries to people in need." - Jason Pfister
Anna was first drawn to the Food Shuttle's mission and holistic approach to solving hunger. But it's the goats on the Teaching Farm that keep her coming back!