With the opening of Delta Colleges’ food pantry, coordinators have to find and train volunteers to help assist students with the store.
According to Student Activities Coordinator Ana Villegas, there are approximately 16 approved student volunteers and about 30 faculty volunteers.
Would-be volunteers fill out a form at deltacollege.edu, attend a training class, then must complete a required TB test and a background check.
“We want students who are wanting to help their fellow peers, kind people, dedicated and reliable. That’s one of the biggest things, especially with the food pantry, since we have such a huge amount of students who need services or asking for services,” said Villegas.
The volunteers are responsible for assisting students who are utilizing the food pantry and making sure the rules and point system are being followed.
Delta College’s food pantry gives students 100 points per semester, but patrons are limited to using 16 points a week to prevent shortages for students who haven’t had the chance to shop.
Volunteers say they enjoy the fact that they have the opportunity to work for the food pantry.
“I’m a part time student at Delta, so I have a lot of free time and I always want to get involved on campus when I can and I think this is a good opportunity to do that,” said Delta student Ashley Le.
It’s about giving back.
“I love helping others. I didn’t know I was this passionate about it until I started volunteering here at Delta. It hits home for me and makes me feel happy with every time finish doing something or when I’m about to do something that is not going benefit me at all and help someone else,” said Delta student Jessica Avila.
The “Platinum Rule” while working for the food pantry is “treat others the way they want to be treated,” said Villegas.
This rule is effective considering some students may want to talk or vent to volunteers.
“A support system and a safe place to vent, I have talked to a few of students who have come in for services and you hear the struggle they are going through. It’s a really good venting environment for students,” said Villegas.
The volunteers have to dedicate at least an hour to the food pantry and scheduling is fairly flexible.
The last training for the semester was April 3, but those interested can still sign up at bit.ly/sjdcPantry. Further instruction should follow after application.
Students can apply for access to the food pantry at bit.ly/sjdcPantry.