The Hays County Food Bank is about to see its busiest season yet thanks to the onset of the holidays; however, the food bank is already experiencing a shortage of food. This is one resource that has always proven to be an invaluable resource to the entire community, especially since one out of every seven residents experiences food insecurity. Those residents who fall into this category, by the way, can register to receive a holiday meal box, but must do so by September 30th. For more information regarding qualifications on how to become a client of the Hays County Food Bank, as well as distribution information, you can visit the food bank’s official website.
Here are a few different ways in which you can assist the Hays County Food Bank counteract their food shortage:
By donating just $1, you will be helping to ensure that men, women, and children across the entire county each get five meals. Here are some of the different methods in which you can donate:
- Mail a check directly to the food bank itself.
- Visit the food bank and drop off either cash or a check to donate. You can also request a tour if you’d like.
- Visit the food bank’s website and make a donation there, which can be done one-time, monthly, quarterly, or annually.
If you aren’t able to donate money, the next best thing is to donate food to the Hays County Food Bank. The bank has an Amazon wishlist that details the items that they need the most, which include the following:
- Chicken, tuna, salmon, and various other canned meats
- Carrots, asparagus, and other various canned vegetables
- Fruit cocktail, peaches, pineapple, and other various canned fruits
- Peanut butter/jelly
- Beans/rice in one-pound bags
- Pasta/macaroni and cheese/pasta sauces
If you have a donation that is under 500 pounds in weight, you are asked to deliver it directly to the food bank on Monday through Thursday between the hours of 9:00 AM and 3:00 PM, or on Friday between the hours of 9:00 AM and 12:00 PM.
If you’re someone who enjoys volunteering, the Hays County Food Bank allows plenty of opportunities for you to do so. You are asked to visit their official website in order to complete a volunteer application, then attend and complete an official orientation. Here are some of the current volunteer positions that are available.
- Drivers: This position involves picking up various food items from H-E-B stores during the morning hours, including on weekends. You will also drive to and from distribution centers to help load and unload food items as well, as well as interact with clients and hand food out to them. If you wish to become a driver, you must be 25 years of age or older and have a clean driving record. You are also asked to bring a valid driver’s license and social security card to your orientation.
- Warehouse: This position involves providing assistance to the operations team with obtaining food from H-E-B stores, sorting/weighing it, determining whether or not it is contaminated and/or damaged, creating food boxes and bags, and loading/unloading vans. Other basic duties involve mopping, sweeping, recycling, taking out the trash, and other general cleanup.
- Distribution: This position involves assistance with loading and unloading vans, helping to set up food that will be given out to residents, interacting with residents, and actually handing out food to them.
- Front Office/Client Services: This position involves assisting various office staff members with answering phones, assisting food bank clients, putting together various promotional materials, folding up brochures, inputting data into databases and/or spreadsheets, making copies of various documents, and other types of clerical duties. If you wish to become a front office volunteer, you must go through an additional training session once the normal volunteer orientation ends.
- Adopt-A-Farm: This is a position that involves traveling to local farms and gardens and assisting with weeding, planting, harvesting, and assisting local farmers with whatever they need. The farmers will then donate a portion of their fresh produce to the Hays County Food Bank.
- Special Projects/Events: This position can vary depending on the actual event or project that will be taking place.
- Speaker’s Bureau: This position will involve speaking on behalf of the food bank itself at different area events.
- Social Media Ambassador: This will enable you to utilize your own personal social media account to help increase awareness involving the food bank.
- Board of Directors: This position involves serving on the 501 (c)(3) corporation governing board, attending monthly meetings, making a personal donation to the food bank in the form of money, various forms of committee work, food drives/fundraisers, volunteering, and more.