Over the Christmas Holidays, students from all over the Senior and Junior Schools volunteered for OzHarvest in The Kitchens, Robina. We were tasked with selling merchandise, and getting the word out about the great work OzHarvest does all across Australia.
Before volunteering, not many of us were aware of what exactly OzHarvest does, and how much effort was required of us to help them do what they do best, but we soon discovered it was no small amount. Our tasks included taking care of the stall, selling merchandise, giving out pamphlets and collecting donations, for hours at a time.
On the first few days, it was quite disheartening to see people we approached carry on without so much as a greeting, but for every person that chose to ignore us there was another one waiting to ask how they can help. It was not hard to see that the Gold Coast community is incredibly generous and open-minded. It was this very same generosity that reminded all volunteers what exactly we were working towards. OzHarvest, as we found, rescues surplus foods from commercial outlets such as produce stores, hotels and restaurants and then donates all the collected food to over 900 charities all over Australia! While managing the stall, it was a motivating thought that for every $1 that we collected, two meals would be donated to those who need them.
Communication and social skills were definitely tried while working at the ‘Soul Shop’, but without testing their limits, we would never have collected $2,090! Through our efforts, we have allowed OzHarvest to deliver over 4,000 meals to people in need! This experience, like all Service experiences, fills you with the joy that accompanies being able to help people that need it, even though you yourself may not be donating money. I am certain that all the volunteers believe deeply that volunteering for OzHarvest over the holidays was a meaningful and unforgettable way to use the time off.
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