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Fighting Hunger and Feeding Hope, One Volunteer at a Time

Volunteers Celebrated During National Volunteer Appreciation Week

April 13, 2012

OKLAHOMA CITY - Next week is National Volunteer Appreciation Week, and the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma wants to thank the thousands of Oklahomans who dedicate their time to fighting hunger in the state.

“Volunteers are the lifeblood of this organization,” said Rodney Bivens, executive director of the Regional Food Bank.  “They are helping us fight hunger and feed hope, one volunteer at a time.  Because of the work that volunteers do, the Regional Food Bank is able to provide enough food to feed more than 90,000 Oklahomans each week throughout 53 central and western Oklahoma counties.” 

More than 50 businesses and organizations will volunteer next week to help fight hunger.  As a thank you to volunteers, the Regional Food Bank is hosting the following appreciation days:

  • Monday, April 16 – Prize Giveaway Day.  Enter for a chance to win some great prizes from the Made in Oklahoma Coalition, and Starbucks.
  • Tuesday, April 17 – Deep Fork Grill Day.  The Deep Fork Mobile Truck will be selling delicious food between 11:30 a.m. and 5 p.m.
  • Wednesday, April 18 – Super Treat Day.  Enjoy fresh baked goodies, courtesy of the Regional Food Bank staff.
  • Thursday, April 19 - Deep Fork Grill Day and Rock N’ Box Night.  Back by popular demand!  The Deep Fork Mobile Truck will be selling delicious food between 11:30 a.m. and 5 p.m.  Then, stick around for the famous Rock ‘n Box with DJ Dan from 6 to 9 p.m.
  • Friday, April 20 – Movie and Popcorn Day and Appetizer Night.  Enjoy a movie featuring volunteer photos from throughout the year.  Then, stick around as Deep Fork grill makes volunteering appetizing with complimentary appetizers for the first 100 volunteers between 6 and 8 p.m.
  • Saturday, April 21 – Devon Energy Corporation Volunteer Appreciation Day.  Free commemorative Volunteer Appreciation Day t-shirts for the first 500 volunteers.  Volunteers will also enjoy complimentary breakfast and a lunch cook-out, courtesy of Devon Energy and the Regional Food Bank. 

Volunteers help the Regional Food Bank fulfill its mission of “Fighting Hunger…Feeding Hope” by sorting donated product, assembling food boxes, working special events and more.

Compared to the same time last year, the Regional Food Bank has seen a 19 percent increase in the number of volunteers donating their time.  Last year, thousands of volunteers donated more than 120,000 hours of service, saving the Regional Food Bank $2 million in labor. 

“Without volunteers, we can’t get food to those who need it,” said Bivens.  “Donating a few hours of your time makes a huge difference in the life of a hungry Oklahoman.”

Individual volunteer hours are available Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. until noon and 1 to 4 p.m. with no appointment necessary.  Volunteering is also available on Thursdays from 6 to 9 p.m. through Rock ‘n Box, which is volunteering with a fun twist like Karaoke or a live band.  The Regional Food Bank is located at 3355 S. Purdue in Oklahoma City. 

“My 12 year old daughter learned that one out of four Oklahoma kids goes to sleep hungry, and she decided that she had to do something to help,” said a recent volunteer.  “She asked me to take her to the Regional Food Bank so that she could start volunteering. She believes she can make a difference!”

Groups of five or more should schedule their volunteer time by calling 405.600.3154 or emailing dtester@regionalfoodbank.org. The Regional Food Bank can accommodate groups as large as 200 with advance notice and planning.  For more information, visit regionalfoodbank.org.

Photo (click to view): Devon Energy employees volunteer at the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma.

The Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma is a private, 501(c) (3) nonprofit organization that acts as a link through which the food industry and community may donate food and other goods. The products are then distributed to nearly 825 schools and charitable feeding programs in 53 central and western Oklahoma counties. In fiscal year 2011, the Food Bank distributed 46.2 million pounds of food and product to help the charitable community effectively feed people in need. Since its inception in 1980, the Food Bank has distributed more than 435 million pounds of food to feed Oklahoma’s hungry.

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