This content originally appeared on Life’s blog, and has been reposted with permission.
“A true legacy is established over a lifetime and relates to what a human being does for others, not for himself.” – Bill Courtney
Several times a year, the Life World Headquarters in North Carolina makes it a priority to serve and give back to those who are less fortunate through the Life on Life Initiative. The goal is to make a difference in the community as a corporate team, and the events always serve as a reminder to never take even the simplest blessings for granted.
In February, the Life staff came together to provide meals to those in need by serving at Food Bank CENC’s Raleigh Branch. The mission of the Food Bank is: No One Goes Hungry in Central & Eastern North Carolina. Established in 1980, the Food Bank is a nonprofit organization that has provided food for people at risk of hunger in 34 counties for over 35 years. Food Bank CENC serves a network of more than 800 partner agencies such as soup kitchens, food pantries, shelters, and programs for children and adults through distribution centers in several major cities. Sadly, food insecurity remains a serious problem in central and eastern North Carolina. In these counties, nearly 630,000 people struggle to access nutritious and adequate amounts of food necessary for a healthy life.
Volunteers are the heart and soul of the Food Bank’s mission. In fact, the Food Bank couldn’t operate if it weren’t for volunteers who selflessly give of their time each and every day to ensure all of the food products get packed, sorted, and distributed to its local partners.
On the day of the event, Life volunteers enthusiastically showed up ready to work! The assignment was to work together in teams of 6 to scoop thousands of pounds of pasta into plastic bags, tie them, and place them in large bins to be distributed. The tasks were simple, but the impact was staggering! In just two hours, the Life volunteers bagged 5,000 pounds of pasta, which resulted in 4,000 meals for families in need.
“It’s always a pleasure to serve, but today’s event was a special reminder of the needs of many of our neighbors right here in a seemingly prosperous area of the country. I am grateful for organizations like the Food Bank, and wish to extend a hearty thank you to all the Life corporate employees who so enthusiastically volunteered to contribute today.” – Chris Brady (CEO and Creative Director)
Here are some more comments from some of the Life volunteers:
“Seeing the scale of operations at the Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina really drove home how significant the hunger problem is in our state. From a service standpoint, we are reminded of Matthew 25:35 “…for I was hungry and you gave me food.” Our Life on Life events are rewarding because they are more than a volunteer gathering, instead they are opportunities for us to show the love of Christ to those in need.” – Jay Russell (Director of International Operations)
“I really enjoy the volunteering that we do as a company, but this opportunity was my favorite. I never knew scooping pasta could be so rewarding. What we did on Wednesday put food into over 4,000 homes. I am extremely thankful that I work for an organization that cares about making a difference in other people’s lives.” – Barbara Wolosonowich (Customer Service Manager)
“This last Life on Life event was lots of fun! It was amazing to hear how many people will be receiving a meal, all by simply giving a little of our time. Every Life on Life is a great opportunity to experience the joy that comes when we help others.” – Gaby Theriot (Spanish Media Production)
“I really had a great time serving at the Food Bank. One of my favorites so far. I enjoyed learning that the “food insecure” are not necessarily those you would initially think. That these individuals are working sometimes more than one job to feed themselves and their families. It put into perspective that this issue is much larger than what I imagined. The statistics on how they serve the 34 counties in NC was very impactful; 1 million pounds a week is an enormous amount of food and the fact that they do that with so much volunteer help is just amazing. The people that worked there were so positive and upbeat and I loved their energy. The knowledge that what we did was so impactful to the community made it an activity I will look forward to participating in each year.” – Camille Walker (Buyer/Logistics Coordinator)
“Serving at the Food Bank was great! Not only do you connect with co-workers on a different level, but also with the culture and heart of our company, which is to Love and Serve, expressed in action.” – Andy Garcia (International Media Manager)
“This was a great experience. While volunteering, it made me think of putting myself in the shoes of a person or family in need and how grateful I would be to someone taking time out of their day to help someone like me. Though I may never meet anyone that would benefit from our efforts, I know it would go to people that need it.” – Curtis Williams (Compliance Specialist)
“Volunteering at The Food Bank was one of the best experiences I have ever had. The fact that the company I work for encourages us to help make a difference in peoples’ lives is a wonderful feeling.” – Renauda Thompson (Accounts Payable)
“What an amazing experience! From start to finish all of us had a great time as we contributed to a great cause. Thank you Food Bank for allowing us to serve and help to feed the hungry.” – Martin Spusta (Director of IT)
“It was an amazing and humbling experience to be able to volunteer at the Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina. It was great to take part in helping to provide much needed food to needy families in our state. Sometimes it can be easy to forget that even in such a developed and prosperous nation like ours that there are still families and children that don’t have enough food to eat. It really makes you thankful and appreciative of what you have when you know that there are people in your community who have to go hungry because they can’t afford to buy food. It was really an informative and fulfilling experience. I hope we can volunteer there again and continue to provide food to those who need it most.” – Chris Janes (Media Specialist)
“I had no idea the Food Bank served over a third of the counties in North Carolina. The amount of people that this place helps is amazing. I will definitely be going back to volunteer again.” – Jennifer Headley (Media Tech)
“When you hear the numbers and stats regarding the “tons” of food that is processed through this facility, it seems a little overwhelming. But, once you take that first step into the warehouse and you see all of the food that has been donated and purchased with donations, it becomes abundantly clear that there are a “ton” of people that still care! A “ton” more of us that are needed to actually move the massive amounts of food out into the hands of those that need it so very badly! To be able to donate my small amount of time, with such an awesome and rockin’ group of givers, multiplied my small contribution of time immensely!! Talk about compound interest!!!” – Renée Turner (Corporate Support)
“I enjoyed participating in the Life on Life event at the Food Bank. It was a great opportunity to help our community as well as to interact with my co-workers. It’s not often I get a chance to do both. The activity was one that I would encourage others to do and definitely will do again myself.”– Debra Daniels (Senior Accountant)
Thank you to all of the Life corporate volunteers who served in this Life on Life Initiative! Your acts of service truly made a difference for the Food Bank.