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Volunteers and Civic Groups

As a volunteer, you've seen how your efforts can help an organization or a cause that you support. To end childhood hunger, it will take many volunteers across the country. Just as each volunteer brings different skills and interests, each organization has a variety of needs. Whether you volunteer individually or as part of a group, there are many opportunities for you or your group to help end childhood hunger.

These are things you can start working on right away:

  • Volunteer and help recruit volunteers at your chosen anti-hunger organization. There are many programs, including Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) screening and application assistance centers, Summer Food Service Program sites, food banks, and other anti-hunger organizations, that can use your help to make sure that all eligible people have access to nutrition assistance and anti hunger programs. To find opportunities in your community, visit Serve.gov/endhunger. To find volunteer opportunities with local food banks, click here.

  • Conduct outreach for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), the Summer Food Service Program (SFSP), School Meals, Food Distribution on Indian Reservations, and The Emergency Food Assistance Program and cross-promote Federal nutrition assistance programs. Talk about nutrition assistance programs in your services and meetings. Many people are not aware of the multitude of programs available to individuals and families in need. Those who participate in one Federal nutrition program may not be aware that they are eligible for additional assistance. USDA provides many free resources -- especially for SNAP outreach. See the SNAP outreach page for outreach toolkits, outreach materials, information about receiving reimbursement for outreach activities through your State, radio ads, public service announcements, and more.

  • Think about ways to use your professional skills in a volunteer capacity. Think about what you do every day for work. Your skills may be of use to a nonprofit organization. If you are a painter, an anti-hunger organization may need help painting a children's play room. If you have Web site building skills, offer them up to an anti-hunger organization looking to expand their Web presence. The options are limitless and the experience of donating your time and skills will be rewarding.

  • Become a sponsoring organization for afterschool and summer sites. One reason for low participation rates in the afterschool and summer meal program is the lack of accessible locations. Becoming a sponsoring organization that recruits and oversees the meal service in more sites would increase the access to the programs in your community. Contact your State agency to become a sponsor or a feeding site.

  • Increase accessibility of farmers' markets. Your organization could help make fresh fruits and vegetables more accessible to under-served communities by hosting a farmers market and encouraging local farmers markets to accept Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits. To find out about how to start a farmers market, click here. Find out more about accepting SNAP benefits at farmers markets.

  • Partner with a local food bank and host a food pantry. Find food banks in your area.

Last Modified:04/26/2012