Volunteers, we don’t need your help

By United Way of King County, on March 14, 2014 | In Volunteering

I was crushed.  I was home from college for Thanksgiving break.  I felt so good making the phone call.  Serving a holiday meal to people down on their luck at a homeless shelter – what better way to give back at the beginning of the holiday season?! Until the lady on the line said

We don’t need your help.

That was years ago and what I’ve learned since is that agencies do need your help serving healthy meals – they just get lots of offers during the holidays!  What I’ve also learned is that often, more than the meal you provide, the ear you lend and the conversations you have can be just as meaningful.

Hunger Action Week is coming up and I’ve had lots of conversations with people who ask the question ‘can I really make a difference?’  The answer is yes!

Meals bring people together in a way that nothing else does.  Whether you’re behind-the-scenes growing or preparing the food – or serving the meals directly – the time you give is time well spent.

A couple ways to get involved:

  • Join a group of hunger fighters on March 22!  We’ll have volunteers out in the community to help us bring Hunger Action Week to a close.  There are all sorts of things to choose from here.
  • It’s not just about serving food!  Help kids learn about growing their own vegetables.  Watch their eyes light up when they discover new flavors and learn how they can grow their own container-type garden in their own kitchens!
  • Put your own group together to prepare healthy meals – then stick around and enjoy the meal with the people you’re serving.
  • Help people get connected to Food Stamps. This one is more of a long-term commitment, but if you want to help people access more nutritious foods and have a 4-hour block each week, check out our Bridge to Basics program.


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