Food banks survive thanks to the help and hard work of warehouse volunteers. They come for a variety of reasons and have diverse backgrounds yet unite to help end hunger in the Washington metro area. These volunteers are the driving force behind our food distribution and allow us to feed thousands daily.
On arrival, volunteers are led into a large sorting area filled with crates of food and empty boxes. All volunteers undergo orientation conducted by our Salvage Coordinator, David McCall, before beginning work. He leads a quick training session and provides a tour of the facilities. In orientation they learn their sense of purpose and see how their work is mission critical to food bank operations and feeding people.
Food is first vetted to ensure it is consumable. Volunteers check expiration dates and inspect for compromised packaging. Anything suspect is tossed. The food is then sorted into 31 categories based on dietary classifications (e.g. pasta, fruits, vegetables, etc.). Once categorized, the food is ready for distribution.
Why volunteer? Why devote time and energy to helping others eat?
Alexandra ‘Sasha’ Beskorowni believes:
For Stephen Gibson, it is service for the homeless:
Cynthia Hass is passionate about hunger issues:
As evidenced, our volunteers are motivated by altruism and improving the community. While some arrive with knowledge of hunger issues, all leave better understanding the scale within our service area of nourishing our neighbors in need. They really step up and make a difference in people’s lives. We’re proud to have great people regularly volunteering that embody the mission and values of the food bank.