Volunteers fuel Gleaners Food Bank

(WISH Photo)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — From individual volunteers to large groups from local schools and organizations, manpower is irreplaceable for Gleaners Food Bank staff who work year-round to bring food to the 21 counties the food bank serves.

It’s not easy work for the volunteers, but those 24-Hour News 8’s Nina Criscuolo spoke with say it feeds their soul.

“This is non-food products, so it could be anything from band-aids to glasses,” John David Bell said.

He’s an 8th grade student at The Oaks Academy.

“It’s kind of saddening actually, because knowing that some people don’t have it and I’ve never even thought about not having it, so it’s kinda like wow,” Bell said.

For Bell, volunteering at Gleaners Food Bank is a wake-up call that springs thankfulness into this spirit.

“We’re able to serve other people and talk and laugh among ourselves,” Bell said.

He’s just one of dozens from his class who are spending their entire day at the food bank.

“This is not about them and they may have times when they’re bored or they don’t want to be doing something, but this is about serving people who are in need,” Trish Cobb, a teacher at The Oaks Academy said.

Just at the other side of the warehouse there are more volunteers, this time a group from Anthem and AT&T in Indianapolis are hard at work.

“We are here unloading for the Kroger truck and we are taking all the food out, off the truck for distribution to needy families around Indianapolis,” Katy Blomeke said.

Blomeke and her volunteer teammates are working mothers, who say it’s important to give back in a tangible way.

“Give a hand up to those folks who really need it, so this is an awesome place to come and do it and you feel really productive right at the end of the day, you feel like you’ve accomplished something,” Blomeke said.

Gleaners currently helps 260,000 hungry Hoosiers.

For Gleaners, $10 or two hours of your time can help fight the hunger problem in central Indiana.