A couple of weeks ago my kiddos and I were able to tour our local Harvesters – The Community Food Network food bank and even spent some time volunteering there and sorting food – it was way way fun, and a perfect service opportunity to do as a family (LOVE that!). I know we all love helping and serving in our community, but sometimes we don’t know how to help. Or think we can’t right now because our family is too young. On the contrary! I actually LOVE finding service opportunities that we can tackle as a family.
It was eye opening to learn about the food struggles in our community. Two specific things really stood out to us. First, the new #hungry4more initiative – – as you can image, the food that is collected is food that is preserved and can be stored easily, etc. But there is a great need to provide healthy, fresh food to food banks. Our Harvesters is currently working to double the size of their refridgeration room so that they have more space to store fresh foods. There is a big need to provide health fresh food to those in need!
The kids took pictures of all the signs, and then about a million in the photo booth 😉
The second thing that really stood out to us was the BackSnack Program. You might have something similar in your area. It is where a bag of food is provided to school-age children on Fridays for them to take home over the weekend. The stories of the children really hit home as I was there with my kiddos learning about how these kids struggle. There were signs throughout the warehouse reminding you of the gratitude that the recipients have for the help they receive.
We then toured local Food Bank, and I think that was a great way to lead the evening. It made the service that we provided more meaningful because we knew more about the problem and how we were helping.
After the tour we were able to dive in and give of our time. We were taught to sort the donated food. It is in piles surrounds by bins, and you simply work through the piles, putting the food items into the appropriate bins.
It was for sure a task that the kids could help with – they had tons of fun racing each other to see who could sort their box first, or who could find certain items first, etc. They really enjoyed being able to help!
Don’t think that just because you have kids, you won’t be able to find opportunites to serve. This worked great for us. The age limit at Harvesters was 8+ years and up, so be sure to check your local food bank for their guidelines.
It’s #HungerActionMonth, so get out there and volunteer at your local food bank! #Hungry4More If you’re unable to donate time, you can always donate food items. Work with your family to do a food drive, or work to collect money to donate. A fun way to involve kids may be to have them raise money to support the BackSnack program – A donation of $250 provides a weekly BackSnack for one child for an entire school year. Finding ways to serve the community with kids is all about finding ways such as these that will work with your situation but still allow you to help and serve. I know it’s something my kids won’t forget!