Palmer and Kim Allen have been volunteering at the Food Bank for almost a year, and have already done so much to help fight hunger in our community. We recently talked with this dynamic couple to find out more about them and why they’re passionate about volunteering:
Tell us a little bit about yourself and family:
We moved to West Monroe about 10 years ago from Northwest Arkansas. Palmer is in federal law enforcement and his work is what brought us to this area. We have two children, Henry and Sam, ages 8 and 6. Kim is self employed as a General Appraiser focusing mostly on commercial real estate projects.
What motivated you to volunteer with the Food Bank?
We have become more involved with our church and our Christian faith and were looking for places where we might be able to get plugged in and make a difference in our local community. We had heard ads on the radio regarding the Food Bank of NELA and had previously donated a few times with them, so we reached out, and they found a spot for us to help immediately.
What makes this volunteer experience a meaningful use of your time?
We volunteer in both the Backpack program, delivering food to children in need at local schools as well as delivering Senior Boxes to the elderly in our community that are unable to get out and pick up their boxes on their own. Knowing that we are hopefully helping people, young and old, that might not otherwise be able to help themselves is a very rewarding and meaningful use of our time and energy. You get so bogged down in the tasks of every day, it’s easy to focus on yourself sometimes, but helping people is what we’re called to do. We really enjoy it.
What has surprised you most about working with the Food Bank?
The biggest surprises to us are how many communities the Food Bank reaches out to, how many programs there are, and how impoverished some places are right here in our own area.
What do you wish other people knew about the Food Bank?
I wish more people knew that when you volunteer with or donate to the Food Bank of NELA, you’re helping people right here in your own community. Also, there are so many volunteers that come together to make the food bank a success.
What’s your personal philosophy on what should be done about hunger?
We wish there were no hungry kids or hungry people of any age for that matter. But unfortunately there are. We just want to help where we can and do what we can do.
What would you tell someone who is thinking about volunteering with the Food Bank?
You definitely should. They are always looking for hands to help, and it is a very rewarding opportunity. The Food Bank needs physical help, but they also need monetary donations to keep them running. Whether it is through volunteer time or through a small financial investment to fight hunger, I believe that those donations will be blessed and multiplied to truly make a difference in the lives of those in our area.