Why Volunteer at a Food Bank?
How do you spend your precious free time? Do you hunker down for a Netflix marathon, head to the gym or pursue a hobby you love? For many people, there’s not a lot of free time left in a typical week after subtracting out hours spent working and fulfilling other responsibilities. In spite of this, large numbers of people across the country pledge to volunteer at their local soup kitchens, food pantries, and food banks. Many of Feeding America’s corporate partners also invite their employees to clear their calendars for special volunteering opportunities. They open up their schedules and their lives to help out their neighbors in need, and as a result, the Feeding America network has the manpower necessary to provide food to 46 million people in need each year.
Over the past few months, Feeding America has been shining a light on the importance of volunteerism to our food bank network. Since time is such a limited commodity, we asked three of our corporate partners to share why they value volunteerism to help provide new answers to the simple question “why volunteer at a food bank?” Here’s what they had to say:
Bank of America
“Volunteering is a rewarding and meaningful way to help our communities grow and thrive,” said Kerry Sullivan, president of the Bank of America Charitable Foundation. “Our employees are passionate about hunger relief, providing nearly 90,000 volunteer hours in 2015 and this year participating in more than 100 volunteer events during the month of April.”
“We feel so strongly about our employees getting involved that we offer to pay them to volunteer in their communities up to four times a year,” says Robert Thomsen, vice president GMM merchandising and marketing at BoxLunch, a pop culture-themed retailer that provides the equivalent of one meal to Feeding America for every $10 spent by their customers. “Our employees help BoxLunch to take our commitment to fight hunger down into the communities where they work and live.”
Allstate Insurance Company
“Giving back is one of our guiding principles. It’s important that we live into the Good Hands promise, and our partnership with Feeding America is essential to delivering on that commitment, “ said Matt Winter, president of The Allstate Insurance Company. “Allstate agency owners and employees are proud to join Feeding America to address hunger relief and the importance of food security. In April alone, during Allstate Bring Out the Good Month, we have more than 60 volunteer projects planned at Feeding America organizations across the country.”
As you can see, Feeding America’s corporate partners value volunteering for a variety of reasons. Most importantly, volunteering with Feeding America benefits a community by providing food to families in need. However, it also creates meaningful experiences for volunteers, demonstrates a commitment to a cause and helps individuals and companies make progress toward achieving key social goals. If you haven’t done so already, consider pledging to volunteer at your local Feeding America food bank!
Feeding America would like to say thank you to all of the individuals and companies who generously make time to volunteer with the Feeding America network.
*Allison Weber is the partnerships manager at Feeding America.