Randy Silver never knew that the birth of triplets would change his life. They weren’t related to him, after all. What their birth marked was the beginning of his relationship with Second Harvest Food Bank.
Many years ago the food sort coordinator for his service club (the Kiwanis Club of San Carlos) had triplets and sought out a new volunteer to handle the project. Not knowing what he was getting himself into, Randy agreed to take charge. Initially, it was something that needed to be done, but over time his involvement and passion have grown.
After a year of scheduling sorts with his Kiwanis Club, Randy trained to become a Team Leader in our San Carlos warehouse. As a team leader, Randy serves as a guide for groups and individuals who roll up their sleeves to sort, bag or box food on Wednesday nights. A couple years later he also joined the Food Bank’s Speaker’s Bureau. As an Ambassador he educates interested audiences about the organization and how to get involved. Whether it is in the warehouse or out in the community, Randy can now usually be found spreading the word about local hunger.
“I found that I liked the people who work here, I believe in the mission and when I walk out the door at the end of the night, I know that the food goes to people who need it at the other end,” shares Randy. Speaking specifically about his experience with the group of Team Leaders he continues, “I always look forward to seeing them. People here are self-starters. They walk in, get to work and get the job done.”
If you’ve never been to our warehouse for a sort, you’re in for a surprise. According to Randy, you might find some interesting food in the barrels. The strangest thing he has found? Caviar. In addition to the variety of food you might see, Randy also wants you to know that you will see a LOT of food. One of his most memorable sessions involved a group that sorted 27,400 pounds of food in 2 hours, “Those 55 people were booking it. It was like an ant hill where no one was bumping into each other. It just came together.” That is the record for a sort on Randy’s watch but he challenges you to come in and see if you can beat it.
To Randy, it’s about much more than just food. It ’s about the people. “People keep coming back because we are all just trying to help. It’s magical to be a part of this. Everyone’s heart is in the same place and the feeling that I get inspires me.”
You don’t need to wait for a special occasion (like the birth of triplets) to get started. Whether it be once a year or once a week, we hope you will join Randy through volunteering. From sorting food to giving presentations, there is a special role for you. To learn more about our schedule and special opportunities, please visit www.SHFB.org/volunteer.