Actress Adina Porter on volunteering, parenting and bagging potatoes

Adina and her daughter.
June 28, 2023
by Adina Porter

This summer, actress Adina Porter is getting involved by volunteering at a food bank with her daughter. In this guest post, she shares her experiences about how volunteering with her daughter has been a fulfilling opportunity. 

Initially, I got involved with Feeding America simply because they asked. They inquired as to my availability to volunteer and naturally, I said “yes.” Isn’t that what you’re supposed to do?! Well, that’s how I was raised. I included my daughter because I want to instill in her similar values regarding ‘community.’ 

I want to teach my kids how lucky we are that we don’t want for anything…yet! Parenting is so difficult; my kids act like they don’t listen to a word I say. When I was given this opportunity of service, I figured: “kill two birds with one stone.” First, by volunteering for Feeding America, I could be a good human. And secondly, I could parent by example and, consequently, raise good humans. When my kids were younger, we’d collect trash in our neighborhood, to celebrate Martin Luther King Jr’s Birthday. It’s much easier to join a volunteer event which has been organized by someone else. 

When we volunteered, we were bagging potatoes to be distributed in the community. It was surprisingly fun! It was cool to share stories with other volunteers and have that connection. And while my daughter won’t admit to learning anything from the experience, the lesson for me and my family is clear: let’s value what we have and don’t take it for granted. Recently, a dear family friend began going to a neighborhood food bank because of a change in her life. My daughter and I have come to realize that there isn’t a huge chasm between the people distributing food and the people receiving it.

I’m so glad I started volunteering with my daughter. Actions speak louder than words. If volunteering is one of your passions and you want to share that with your children, plant the seed and bring them along. The younger you start, the easier it is. I appreciate the opportunity to participate and having my daughter present, I’m giving her the chance to pick up wisdom from others. It’s easier, more direct, and you don’t have to get dressed up, unlike Sunday school!

Want to join us? Find your local food bank to discover volunteer opportunities near you!