Friends of Food Security: Feeding the Need Volunteer incentive program begins this week Nov. 30, 2020
In response to what has been described as a “dire need” for more volunteers, a pilot program launches Monday, Nov. 30, to incentivize Black Hills area residents to give their time to two agencies on the front lines of food security efforts: Feeding South Dakota and Meals on Wheels Western South Dakota.
The Friends of Food Security volunteer incentive program is a partnership involving the two food security providers, the Helpline Center, the John T. Vucurevich Foundation, and the Black Hills Area Community Foundation’s Collective Impact Food Security Initiative.
The program will be administered through the Helpline Center, and eligible volunteers who complete a minimum number of volunteer hours will receive Walmart gift cards funded by the philanthropic partners.
Individuals will receive a $25 Walmart gift card for every 4 hours of volunteer time completed between Nov. 30 and Dec. 31. Gift cards will be mailed each Monday to qualified volunteers.
Current volunteers of these organizations are eligible for the incentive program by signing up on the Helpline Center’s website.
Groups who volunteer are eligible but must sign up and be tracked as individuals.
Volunteer tasks could include delivering meals, preparing food boxes, or assisting at mobile food distribution sites. Both Feeding South Dakota and Meals on Wheels Western South Dakota have implemented strong COVID-19 safety protocols to protect volunteers, staff, and food recipients.
The goal of the incentive program is to connect new volunteers to food security volunteer opportunities, especially at a time when both organizations are experiencing a huge increase in need but a decrease in volunteers due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Meals on Wheels recently reported a 39 percent uptick in clients from one week to the next, while Feeding South Dakota says it is working to serve more than twice as many families as usual.
For more information on the Friends of Food Security volunteer incentive program, please contact Audrey Nordine at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 211.