Food Bank Volunteer
by Kevin Miller Share page

Tiding People Over in a Time of Need

Pamela Hanon -- My Experience as a Food Bank Volunteer


Tiding People Over in a Time of Need
food bankAfter serving as receptionist at the Aldergrove Food Bank in Aldergrove, British Columbia for the past seven years, Pamela Hanon has seen all sorts of people walk through the door, anyone and everyone who has fallen on hard times.

The experience has taught her some valuable lessons about life, most notably the need to accept others without passing judgement.

“From the outside, you get the impression these are lazy people who won’t work. But after working here for a while, you realize there are all kinds of reasons why people are where they are. None of them are nice reasons.”

Pamela says most people are embarrassed to walk through the door for the first time, often remarking on how they never thought they would end up there.

But she always replies by saying that’s exactly why the food bank exists - to help tide people over during a difficult time.

Ideally, Pamela says they would like to help people for a short time and then see them move on. But that’s not always possible. Due to addictions, mental illness or multi-generational poverty, some people seem doomed to rely on the system for the rest of their lives.

But the picture isn’t always so grim. Pamela says many people walk into the food bank with a chip on their shoulder. But it’s amazing to see how they change when Pamela and the other food bank staff show them a little bit of love and compassion.

There are Success Stories too!
The other day, a woman who had been visiting the food bank regularly came in beaming because she had just landed a new job. Having worked steadily since she was 14, the woman had recently found herself out of a job. The new job only paid half what the old one did, but she was just happy to be employed again.

Although the food bank is only open one day a week, it makes a huge difference in the lives of those who need it. The fact that some people line up at 7:30 a.m. to ensure they get a spot testifies to this fact.

Everyone who volunteers at the food bank is a Christian. And while they’re concerned about feeding the hungry, Pamela says they also have a higher purpose in mind.

“We hope we can nourish their souls as well as their bodies, to love them as Jesus would love them.”

Why don't you consider phoning your local food bank to see if they could use your help. Your love could influence a life for eternity.

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