What’s it like to volunteer?
Thanks to all of our volunteers. We could not achieve our mission without your passion and hard work! What’s it like to volunteer at EFAA? We asked long-time volunteer Jim about his experience. Listen in…
What inspired you to volunteer at EFAA?
“I was on my way into retirement, so it seemed like the right thing to do. Plus, my mom helped start the Jefferson County Action Center way back when, and my older sister worked for Philadelphia Abundance, so I figured it must be in my blood. And then there were the only logical answers to the age old questions: ‘If not me, who?’; and ‘If not now, when?’”
What types of work do you do at EFAA?
“I work in the food bank twice a week, and occasionally more; I’ve manned tables for EFAA at various events; I’m helping compile EFAA’s 100-year history; I’ve driven the truck to make pick-ups of food and personal items from local bakeries (Thanks Rudi’s!), restaurants, hotels, grocery stores, public schools, etc.; I’m on the acquisition committee; and I get a big kick out of being the human compactor jumping up and down on the cardboard when it starts to overflow the recycle bin out back.”
Has working with EFAA changed how you see the world?
“Not really. I believe people are basically good, friendly, and want to live in harmony with one another; but life isn’t always fair and it’s up to those who can to help those in need. The tables can turn in a heartbeat. What is surprising is all the good and decent and generous people across the social spectrum hiding everywhere in plain sight.”
What keeps you coming back?
“That’s easy to answer – the people I meet – they’re great! All the kids are terrific; the volunteers are unfailingly positive and upbeat; the staff is outstanding; the people who donate are wonderful; and the pay is infinitely large: smiles, laughter, and thank-yous! What’s not to like?”
What do you gain from this experience and what are you proud to give?
“First of all, it keeps me outta trouble; second, it’s fun; third, I meet a lot of interesting people. I give my time and energy, and a check now and again, but I haven’t really thought about it in terms of feeling proud; what it makes me feel is good.”