Originally posted in the Vacaville Reporter: One of the wonderful things about working at a nonprofit organization is that an essential part of the staff are volunteer workers.
The Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano has more than 50,000 hours of volunteer time given to us each year. People serve on our board of directors, answer our phones, bag vegetables, help with food distributions and serve as ambassadors to spread the word about the Food Bank’s work.
It can’t be said enough that there is no way the Food Bank could do its work without the volunteers who dedicate their time to helping us feed people in need.
We know that the least we can do as a thank-you is to host a volunteer recognition event each year, to express our gratitude to the people who help us. One of the major positives about the volunteer recognition event, held last Sunday, was that we were able to share a fun day with those who mean so much to our work.
We pull out all the stops so we can serve people lunch, have some entertainment (provided by volunteers) and give people a goody bag of donated items. Many of our volunteers seldom attend events like this, so it is important to us that they feel like the special guests they are.
This year was difficult for us because we were honoring the memory of Charlene Burns. Char was the coordinator who oversaw our Senior Food Program, until she passed away suddenly in September.
The volunteers who make the Senior Food Program work and Char were family. So, for both volunteers and staff members, losing Char turned us upside down. This year’s volunteer recognition was a bittersweet experience, but it gave us an opportunity to come together to celebrate what we do at the same time we shared our loss.
We thank all of our volunteers for their continued support throughout the year.
If you would like to learn about the many ways to volunteer at the Food Bank, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 855.309.FOOD.