February 23, 2017 – Volunteers of the FoodBank put in 26,616 hours of service last year, and their efforts were celebrated at an annual appreciation luncheon held at Doolan’s Shore Club in Spring Lake. The volunteers were treated to a buffet lunch complete with entertainment from Mr. D. and Friends.
“I find it so rewarding that when I put out a call for volunteers for many different kinds of projects, I always get a great response,” said Judy Daniels, FoodBank Community Engagement Coordinator. “Right now, we have 45 different job assignments that volunteers can work from sort room to mobile pantry locations to our garden to data entry and special events. The hours from our volunteers this year were valued at $710,647 and that’s just one of the many reasons we love our volunteers.”
The FoodBank’s largest growth in volunteers was in the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program (VITA), where volunteers are trained by the IRS to assist in filling tax returns for low and moderate income families. Because they are volunteers, the FoodBank can offer this service for FREE to those who qualify. This group logged in more than 17,000 hours at several locations in Monmouth and Ocean Counties and will continue until April 18th. The program returns $3.1 million in refunds and credits to local families who are earning incomes of less than $54,000 a year.
Volunteers are the heart of the FoodBank and when we all work together, we can help to ensure that Hunger Won’t Win Here!