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National Volunteer Week is April 10 to 16, 2016 and we are celebrating all the amazing volunteers who share their time, talent and energy to help feed kids in our city. We are so grateful and inspired by the tireless dedication and passion of all of our volunteers and we are so proud to count each one of these people as part of the BB4CK community! At our kitchen we currently have 44 core volunteers who join us each week to help ensure there are no hungry kids in Calgary. We also have 10 to 15 core volunteers who cover Fridays and sick/vacation coverage at the kitchen. This month we shine the kitchen volunteer spotlight on Michelle, Dom and William, and Jennah, Vincent and Pat!

Michelle, William and Dom

On Monday and Tuesday mornings you can find Dom, Michelle and William Dow at our kitchen, prepacking the day’s lunch bins with yogurt, a fruit, a veggie and a snack. The Dow family discovered BB4CK when a friend posted on her Facebook page about her company’s involvement. “At the time we were looking for somewhere to invest a little volunteer time that would work with our work and family schedule. We looked up what BB4CK was all about and sent an email in seeing if they could accommodate the time in our schedule.” Opportunities aligned perfectly and the Dow’s have been volunteering at the kitchen now for just over a year.

“Not only is it a great way to help children who would otherwise go without, but it keeps perspective in our lives. We accidentally missed sending our son to school with lunch one day before we started volunteering at BB4CK. The feeling we carried with us for the rest of the week was unbearable. So to think that many children have to try and function on a daily basis without lunch is heartbreaking. We were fortunate that his teacher was able to buy him a sandwich so he didn’t go without that day. She described it to us as “an act of kindness she tries to model for the children in her class.” We decided to take that kindness and generosity and pay it forward.  Every week we try and model this same act of kindness to our son by informing him about what we do and getting him to participate with us when he can. The fact we can be part of a great organization who help children everyday is our favorite part about volunteering.  We are grateful for an organization which touches close to home, who have welcomed us into their family and who are making a difference in our future and our children’s future.  Thank you BB4CK for all that you do.” – Michelle, Dom and William Dow

Pat and Vincent

On Wednesday and Thursday mornings you can find Jennah, Vincent and Pat at the kitchen helping in a number of ways; cutting veggies, packing and sealing veggies or snacks, or cleaning out the returned lunch bins. Jennah and Vincent have been volunteering together with BB4CK since March 2014 and Pat just recently started in the kitchen three months ago.

“I work for Chrysalis. Chrysalis is a Calgary day program for adults with intellectual disabilities. Chrysalis finds volunteer sites for our clients all over the city of Calgary.

Jennah and Vincent

Our Volunteer Coordinator got in touch with BB4CK about 2-3 years ago, and our clients have volunteered at the kitchen ever since. We are lucky we were placed with BB4CK!

We absolutely love volunteering our time at BB4CK, the kitchen is a wonderful place for our clients. They are taught different things during their time in the kitchen that provide them with skills they otherwise might not get. Brown Bagging staff are the most wonderful people and are always so inviting. We are always treated with the utmost respect. My clients are so happy volunteering here, they look forward to coming on their days and so do I!!” – Jennah Desjardins

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