A Message from the Volunteer Engagement Team
We would like to thank everyone who supported the Greater Vancouver Food Bank (GVFB) over the busy holiday season. YOU showed up for the community despite the cold, rainy, and snowy weather conditions. And because of this, we were able to provide healthy food to those in need!
With increased registration of up to 1,000 new clients each month, we continue to lean on the big hearts of our volunteers who help the GVFB maintain its day-to-day operations. Your impact reaches 15,000 lives and 141 Community Agency Partners monthly. There are no words to truly express how grateful we are.
Upcoming Program Changes
In December 2022, we shared an individual Volunteer Feedback survey with the intention of enhancing your volunteer experience. After reviewing the results and additional comments, we are excited to share the following changes:
- 24 hours cancellation policy – volunteers now have up to 24 hours (previously 48) to cancel a shift or make changes to their schedule via My Impact. We recognize the importance of flexibility when balancing life priorities and volunteering.
- Rebalancing group and individual opportunities – to ensure individual volunteers receive the opportunity to sign up for a shift, group sizes will be adjusted as of April 1st, 2023. Saturday shifts at Terminal will also be reserved for individual volunteers only.
Vancouver Distribution – max. group size of 10 (previously 15)
Burnaby Distribution – max. group size of 7 (previously 10)By rebalancing the individual and group volunteer ratio, we believe volunteers will have more equal access to opportunities.
- Volunteer schedule – volunteer opportunities will be released via My Impact on the first Monday of each month for the following month (example: May schedule will be released on Monday, April 3rd). Please note that schedules will be posted on Tuesday if there is a statutory holiday landing on the first Monday.
Supporting the Volunteer Community
Earlier this year, four of our rockstar warehouse volunteers were given the opportunity to complete their electric pallet jack (EPJ) training. This new skill will help them safely move pallets of donations, fresh food, and supplies around the warehouse.
Volunteers can be informally trained to use a manual pallet jack that moves pallets with light to moderate weight. However, when they are building orders or maneuvering heavy pallets, it’s advised to use an EPJ to reduce the risk of injury and accidents. John, our incredible warehouse volunteer, completed his EPJ certification and shares the ease and independence his new training has given him.
“Acquiring my EPJ certification has made it safer and more efficient for me to move heavy pallets around independently,” said John.
John has supported the operations team since 2020 and uses the EPJ to move pallets of fresh food donations. Did you know that at least 60% of the food we distribute is fresh?
Bill, Tia, and John (on the left) were trained in January by Warehouse Associate Perry (on the right). Not shown is Mike, who received training in February.
Accomplishments and Celebrations
Last month, we held two volunteer contests!
Congratulations to Alex J. who received two tickets to the Just for Laughs: Nick Thune show! And congratulations to Christiane C., the lucky winner of two Vancouver Canucks tickets!
We look forward to offering more opportunities to celebrate this amazing volunteer community.
Welcome New Volunteers!
Since January, our team has been busy onboarding 100 new individual volunteers.
We have also resumed hosting in-person orientations, which were paused in early 2020 due to COVID-19.
If you joined between 2020-2022 and are interested in learning more about the GVFB we encourage you to try our new training modules on My Impact!
Volunteer Appreciation Week
National Volunteer Appreciation Week is from April 16-22nd. The theme is Volunteering Weaves Us Together, which truly encompasses the diversity and strength of our passionate volunteers.
“Like each individual thread makes weaving stronger, every volunteer’s experience, perspective, and abilities add to our collective resilience.” – Volunteer Canada
Upcoming events and announcements will be shared on the My Impact newsfeed.