Donating to a food bank is a great way to help fight hunger, but have you ever wondered how your donations are used? There are various ways to donate to a food bank, and each type of donation is used differently. Here are some examples of what the process of contributing to a food bank looks like.
Donations of Time
Food banks require many volunteers to run smoothly. Time is spent organizing food, preparing it for distribution, tracking and recording donations, and maintaining the space the food is kept in before it leaves the food bank. In addition to the work involving physical donations, volunteers engage in clerical work and may even be asked to assist with a food bank’s website or social media. There is always a need for volunteers to get this work done and keep the food bank operational.
Donations of Money
Many people don’t realize that food banks also need donations of money. Food banks need cash to pay for building space and electricity to help keep donated food fresh.
Food banks supplement donated food with the food they can purchase in bulk. This helps them diversify the food they can distribute and ensure they have enough, especially when donations are scarce.
Donated funds may also help to pay for staff at the food bank. Volunteers typically do most work, but someone needs to be around to direct the food bank and manage distribution full-time.
Donations of Food
Although food may be the first donation type that comes to mind, many people don’t understand how their contributions are used. Food banks distribute food to food pantries and local hunger-relief programs such as soup kitchens, homeless shelters, and religious groups. They repackage food to be delivered to these locations and distributed in the communities they serve. Food banks act as a storage and organizational checkpoint for your donations on their way to the hands of those that need them.
Understanding how a food bank works can inspire new donations and contributions to the fight against hunger in your community. There are many options for donations; each option is needed and appreciated by the food bank staff and those the food bank serves. Keep this information in mind the next time you prepare to donate, whether it be time, money, or food.
The One Initiative unites C.R England and England Logistics in the fight to end childhood hunger. Learn more about work of the One Initiative at oneagainstchildhoodhunger.com.