By far the people most important to the Bemidji Community Food Shelf (BCFS) are volunteers. Volunteers from churches and from the community receive food donations, unpack freight, work on The Farm and in the Deep Winter Greenhouse, stock shelves, and pick up goods from local merchants.
Volunteers in the food shelf typically work four hour shifts on Monday, Wednesday or Friday. If these times do not work for you, it may be possible to make other arrangements. Please contact the volunteer coordinator or farm manager prior to arriving to volunteer.
When volunteering at the food shelf, please park on the West side of the building or under the mural on the warehouse. Volunteers may enter through the West facing door that is marked employees only. We ask that you leave all valuables in your vehicle, as we do not have a secure location to store them. Both the Director’s office as well as the farm office are located to the right upon entering through this door.
Please see the position descriptions for specific information about each volunteer position and information on how to sign up to volunteer. Ongoing opportunities include Intake Interviewers, Warehouse Helpers, Gleaners, Store Helpers and Farm Volunteer (seasonal).
Here’s a photo story created by BSU student Annie Braught that shows what it’s like to volunteer at the food shelf:
Why should you volunteer at the food shelf? Let our volunteers tell you!
- “I enjoy working with the volunteers. The atmosphere is positive and encouraging.”
- “Volunteering helps keep me physically fit.”
- “I like to help people and volunteering helps me stay busy and meet different people.”
- “The best part of volunteering is meeting interesting people who need just a bit of help with food.”
- “It’s fun to talk to our customers. Sometimes I even get hugs from those who I have known for years.”
- “Shared time with my husband is my favorite part of volunteering.”
- “Fulfilling an urgent community need makes my volunteer experience rewarding.”