The production and food sorting floor at Daily Bread Food Bank is always alive with the thrum of volunteers diligently sorting and packing food donations for our member agencies. Amidst this lively atmosphere stands Karen, one of our dedicated volunteers. Her movements are methodical, yet lightning fast. “One Karen is the equivalent to ten volunteers,” says Damion, who oversees volunteers on the production floor. “She is one of the hardest working, dedicated volunteers.”
For Karen, the impact of rising inflation on food insecurity hits close to home. “I was forced to stop working when I had a bad bout of rheumatoid arthritis. I had to rely on Ontario Works to support myself but that left me with only six dollars after I paid my rent,” she says. “Thankfully, I had some RRSPs I could draw on, but not everyone is that lucky.
Volunteers are at the heart of what we do at Daily Bread and ensuring that they have a meaningful experience is of the utmost importance to us. We recently conducted a comprehensive bi-annual volunteer survey to gain insights into their perspectives on volunteering with us. One of the most heartwarming findings from the survey was that 98% of volunteers felt they had a real impact on the community. They expressed how their contributions aligned with Daily Bread’s vision of a hunger-free city, instilling them with a profound sense of pride in their work. Karen is just one example of this connection to community we get to witness each day.
“People are really struggling, and food is something everyone deserves,” says Karen. “That’s why I work so hard to sort as much food as I can, so I can help ensure more people have access to food.”
We are deeply grateful to the many volunteers who walk through our doors each day. With a smile on their face and the most positive energy, they pour their heart into every activity, be it food sorting, serving clients, preparing meals, or picking orders for our agencies. Every single action is making an impact for the tens of thousands of.
We also received some valuable feedback that although volunteers enjoy their time at Daily Bread, navigating the online registration software or finding open shifts can sometimes prevent them from volunteering. Our People and Culture team is fast at work finding solutions to create barrier-free registrations so that nothing stands in the way of our cherished volunteers that want to make a difference.
Click here if you would like to volunteer with Daily Bread.