BROOKINGS – The Helpline Center honored Feeding Brookings volunteers as the June 2017 Volunteer of the Month, an area-wide award program sponsored by the Helpline Center and Dakotaland Federal Credit Union.
There to honor and thank the volunteers were Chad Moller, branch manager of Dakotaland Federal Credit Union; Katie Nelson, employee of DFCU; and Brookings Mayor Keith Corbett, present to personally thank the volunteers and recognize their impact on the Brookings community. Amy Ballou, Volunteer Connections coordinator, conducted the presentation.
The Feeding Brookings volunteers were nominated by the Feeding Brookings Committee, including Roberta Olson, Feeding Brookings coordinator, and Liz Tomsen, Feeding Brookings intern.
These 17 volunteers pick up donations from Hy-Vee and Wal-Mart, unload donations from the Feeding South Dakota truck, set up and assist guests during distribution, and also clean-up after distribution.
The volunteers began serving Feeding Brookings back in 2010 and 2011, and after seven years, they still offer continuous, faithful service. The time and talent offered by these individuals allows Feeding Brookings to serve individuals and families from Brookings, DeSmet, Arlington, White, Flandreau and, Aurora, totaling approximately 110 households, or 350-400 adults and children served.
Roberta Olson says she values her position as Feeding Brookings Coordinator.
“These 17 individuals, in particular, and the other temporary volunteers understand the huge issue of food insecurity and are willing to give of their time to help the 110 households who come as guests.”
About their commitment, Olson said, “They volunteer at least weekly from 2-5:30 p.m. on Thursdays. Three of these volunteers also come on Monday mornings at 8:30 a.m. to unload the Feeding South Dakota Truck that delivers the food commodities.”
Olson also notes even with these 17 committed volunteers, there are others who support Feeding Brookings. Other volunteers include SDSU students, confirmation students or 4-H youth groups, local Brookings businesses and organization volunteers such as Rotary.
“There are many other volunteers who have come and gone during these seven years, but as the Feeding Brookings coordinator, I want to lift up these thoughtful and giving volunteers,” Olson added.
The 17 volunteers being recognized include: Duane and Joanne Matthees, Wally Kemfert, Marlys Thompson, Carolyn and Gerald Erickson, Wanda and John Wirtz, Lois Bellows, Zoe Miller, Irene Porter, Diane Hoff, Eldon Hogie, Stacey Davis, Bette Johnson, David Johnson and Floyd Wiesner.