Volunteer Appreciation Month: How to Make a Difference

April is Volunteer Appreciation Month and the Foodbank of Santa Barbara County will be shining a spotlight throughout the next several weeks on our amazing volunteers, who enable us to do our work to battle food insecurity throughout the county.

There are many ways to make a difference in your community by supporting the Foodbank’s mission through volunteerism.

At our Santa Maria and Santa Barbara warehouse locations, volunteers are needed to assist with food sorting, agency shopping, administrative tasks and other warehouse duties. Children, as young as five, are welcome to volunteer with their family and friends at our Saturday Family Days, when they sort food, crate produce and learn about the Foodbank and our work.

In our communities, volunteers facilitate our Mobile Farmer’s Markets, Mobile Food Pantry and Brown Bag Distributions. This allows us to provide food to those directly in need. If you enjoy working with children and sharing your knowledge, you might be interested in Picnic in the Park, Teens Love Cooking, Food Literacy in Preschool or Kids Farmers Market. Children learn about healthy food choices and receive fresh produce in these volunteer-run programs.

Perhaps, you may be interested in joining one of our Empty Bowls Committees or sharing your expertise in marketing, social media and much, much more. There are so many ways to lend your time and talents, to keep up to date with the latest volunteer opportunities, visit us at foodbanksbc.volunteerhub.com and be sure to create an account.

In addition to volunteering, we want to remind you that one of the simplest ways that anyone can participate in our mission, is by hosting and/or donating to a food drive.  Over 60% of the food that we distribute annually comes from donations. Our biggest food drive of the year is our county-wide Letter Carriers’ Drive when we partner with our Postal Offices on Saturday, May 11. Keep your eyes peeled for a paper bag or post card in your mailbox with all the details and then, on May 11, be sure to leave your donations out for your letter carrier to pick up on their routes. All donated food goes directly to Santa Barbara County residents!