Two woman laugh while organizing produce into baskets.

“TRY IT! There are so many places. Find a place you’re going to love. Try a few different programs, but definitely try it. Because it will change you.” Jan advises, when reflecting about being a volunteer.

Jan first connected with Mission Services when she helped run food drives with her church, The Meeting House Ancaster. When she started doing food drives every week, she got to know our staff very well.

With all she had already done, she wanted to do more. “Once I had more free time, I wanted to help out.” said Jan, “I like to volunteer because I want to help make a difference.”

The Meeting House knew about Jan’s connection to Mission Services, so they reached out to tell us about their Local Compassion Fund. The Meeting House is currently supporting Willow’s Place, making a positive impact in the lives of women who use this service. Through the grant process, The Meeting House congregation learned about Mission Services. “Because of the additional connection, my home church said ‘Why don’t we get involved at Mission Services?’ Now, every third Friday, the home church group comes out to volunteer in the Good Food Centre,” Jan explained.

Jan and her home church decided to volunteer in the food centre because Jan’s passion is for everyone to have healthy food. “Nobody should ever be hungry where we live. Mission Services runs an incredible program; it’s so well organized, and they provide healthy food choices. I love that it’s healthy food choices,” Jan said excitedly.

“The challenge for me is that there is only so much food.” said Jan. In the Good Food Centre, food amounts are calculated based on the size of the family, ensuring 3-4 days worth of food. However, sometimes community members request more, especially of less-supplied items like milk.

“You can’t really give extra,” Jan continued, “because then the people after them may not be able to have any. But they are always so thankful. It’s not about what we give but what they give back to us. That’s why I love volunteering in the food centre. You know you’ve made them happy, how much of a blessing is that to know you’ve treated people with respect, and that you’ve maybe brought some kindness to their day.”

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