RAPID CITY, S.D. — The Friends of Food Security Volunteer Incentive is a collaboration among the Helpline Center, the John T. Vucurevich Foundation, and the Black Hills Area Community Foundation’s Collective Impact Food Security Initiative.
The intent is to incentivize Black Hills area residents to give their time to Feeding South Dakota and Meals on Wheels Western South Dakota.
Individuals who volunteer will receive a $25 Walmart gift card for every 4 hours of volunteer time completed until Dec. 31.
The end goal is to not only recruit volunteers just in the interim, but also for life.
Audrey Nordine, Helpline Center Black Hills Program Coordinator, says, “Perhaps hope that after this one month of giving and receiving you stay engaged with those organizations, or you come back to helpline center and you ask where else you can volunteer.”
The goal of the incentive program is to connect new volunteers to food security volunteer opportunities, especially at a time when both organizations are experiencing a huge increase in need but a decrease in volunteers due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“There is a need for people to come out and give there time – beyond saying ‘this organization needs help’ – we are asking that you are the person to help that organization. We need people to actually act on their giving and this is just a way to incentivize that,” Nordine added.
Groups who volunteer are eligible but must sign up and be tracked as individuals. There is no limit on how many hours you can volunteer.
Volunteer tasks could include delivering meals, preparing food boxes, or assisting at mobile food distribution sites. Both Feeding South Dakota and Meals on Wheels Western South Dakota have implemented strong COVID-19 safety protocols to protect volunteers, staff, and food recipients.
Volunteers who want to sign up for the incentive program, click here.