The Thanksgiving Volunteer Food Bank

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The Swissinfo website has shown that 15% of working households and 22% of retired residents in Switzerland live in poverty; which means poverty affects 1 in 5 people. If you are interested in helping this cause, I would suggest you join the ThanksGiver Volunteer Food Bank which lasts until the 31st of January 2023. This Food Bank provides free food to people who wouldn’t be able to afford it otherwise as well as reducing food waste. For now, it saved 178 tons of food.

Food is furnished to the community by Schweizer Tafel and is then sorted and organised on tables by type of food like vegetables, fruits, yoghurts etc… by the volunteers and people wearing yellow ThanksGiver aprons. Schweizer Tafel distributes surplus food in perfectly good conditions to social institutions and relief organisations; they distribute over 4000 tons worth 27 million Swiss Francs every year which is 16 million tons every day. The Thanksgiver community also has a partnership with Anton Saxer which is a specialist in environmentally friendly and sustainable waste disposal. On top of that, ThanksGiver has a partnership with many other community organisations involved in the issue. 

In my experience, I went to the volunteer food bank which is held in Evangelische Mennonitengemeinde, Muttenz CH from 3:30 to 5:30 on a Wednesday (ISB students are let out early at 2:50) and remember the time flying by and it being quite fun. I, together with five more students over the age of 15, got there and helped organise the food on the tables and put the container boxes away once they were empty with the kind guidance of the Thanksgiver team. After that, we were assigned a particular place where food would be distributed (e.g. someone took care of the oranges while others of the bread etc…) and then handed over a certain quantity of the free food to each of the people coming there who were all very nice. At the end of the food bank, we helped clean up the tables and store the remaining food away. 

I think this was a very fun and helpful way to spend a Wednesday or two after school which left me with the good feeling that comes after doing something for others. If you are interested in joining, sign-up for volunteering and visit the website which has all the information you need about the community, what they do, what they achieved and how to volunteer. If you are an ISB student, you can sign-up via the school. Also, know that if you are interested, you are not to give out your personal details once you are there; nothing more than your name. Finally, your contribution to this community would make a big difference, not only to the community but especially to the people that it helps since they are one of the main reasons this massively helpful community exists in the first place. 

Article By Luisa, Grade 10