Volunteers’ Week: Celebrating our veteran volunteers

Here at FareShare GM our volunteers are like a big, busy family. Eleven of our current volunteers have been with us for over a year, and they just keep coming back for more!

Our experienced ‘veterans’ are full of knowledge and have been vital over the last few weeks in guiding and supporting our influx of new volunteers as we work hard to get food out to frontline charities during lockdown. Some of our longest-serving team members have been with us for so long that it’s hard to imagine life without them. For example, Glynis Platt (pictured above with Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham), has been a valued part of our customer service team for 8 years and counting.

Many of our veteran volunteers started out with a particular interest or goal in mind, but ended up staying for the friendships and camaraderie, like Jackie Price, who joined us in 2017.

“My first motivation was about giving back. Food was my interest, as a retired Home Economics teacher. Equally now, it’s the people I volunteer with – I can see everyone giving 100% and that’s a wonderful thing,” she said.

“The more I’ve got to know the work and the more responsibility I’ve been given, it makes me want to carry on. I like the social side – the annual barbecue and our Christmas event. Volunteering for me is about doing it because you want to.”

 

 

Steve Kitcher, who joined us the same year, has a similar story:

“When I started volunteering I was looking for a commitment to keep myself active. I’ve become used to working in a team – it’s so different from the work situations I’ve been in before.

“I’m fascinated by how much we get done in what can be challenging circumstances. I have a long journey which at times I don’t relish, but once I get to FareShare it’s great fun and that’s credit to the team.”

 

 

We want to give a particularly special thank you at this time to our regular volunteers who are having to isolate at home due to the coronavirus. 11% of our volunteers are aged 70 or over, and between them they have given an astounding 25 years of service to FareShare. We’re looking forward to welcoming them back and enjoying many more years of their company once the pandemic is over.

To celebrate #VolunteersWeek 2020, we’ll be sharing stories of our amazing volunteers every day this week.

FareShare is the only charity to take food from the wholesale level of the food industry

The vast majority of surplus occurs before food even gets to the supermarket. Each FareShare regional centre takes that food and redistributes to those in need. FareShare Go is our supermarket collection service, which deals with supermarket-level surplus.