Illinois Central College Honors students continue to provide volunteer hours to Midwest Food Bank, Morton location. In the fall 2019 semester a total of six students volunteered in Morton.
"They assisted with an array of tasks from packaging and boxing bulk food product, cleaning the warehouse, sorting and labeling canned goods and researching market price comparisons for inventory," Lisa Martin, Executive Director of MFB, Morton, said.
Between class schedules, jobs and extra-curricular actives these students find time to volunteer 20 hours per semester as part of the ICC Honors requirements. Here is a closer look at two of them.
"Busy" doesn't begin to describe Josie Becker's schedule. As a biology, pre-med major at Illinois Center College and a member of the women's basketball team, her schedule is full. As part of the honors program at ICC she also has a requirement of 20 volunteer hours per semester.
"I've enjoyed giving back and what I'm doing is really helping others," Becker said. She first volunteered at MFB, Morton in high school. The Lady Potters basketball team volunteers each year at MFB so she was familiar with the organization. It was a natural fit as she transitioned to ICC. She's done a little of everything at MFB - cleaning the warehouse, labeling food, re-packaging food and researching market price comparisons for inventory.
"When you walk in the door you don't know what you're going to do that day. I enjoy that, it keeps you on your toes," she said.
While Becker enjoys the volunteer work, the fellow volunteers make an impression, too.
"The volunteers are nice, genuine people with a positive attitude." She mentioned the many regular volunteers that are friendly and helpful, especially Norma Weisser. "She's a great role model of what I'd like to be when I retire," Becker said.
When Liam Andrade first volunteered at Midwest Food Bank, Morton, he noticed all the people in the warehouse. He thought they were employees because of how they all seemed to know exactly what they were doing. He then found out they were volunteers and MFB, Morton has one full-time and one part-time employee.
"There were many people volunteering. It is really cool to see an organization survive and expand on that framework," Andrade said. He is a computer science major at ICC and first came to MFB Morton with Sigma Kappa Delta, an honors organization at ICC.
"I didn't know what to expect and it was a nice experience, everyone was really friendly."
Andrade helped with food re-packaging and also was available to volunteer on Distribution Days - when food pantries come to the MFB warehouse to receive food. "Those days are really interesting," he said.
The process to volunteer was "seamless" Andrade said and he would recommend MFB to others. "It is a very welcoming place. It will be on the top of my list to go back," he said.
ICC Honors students that would like to schedule volunteer hours can contact Lisa Martin, executive director, at 309-291-0900 or submit a volunteer inquiry here.