For the last fifteen years, Hank has played an invaluable role in getting food into the hands of those who need it in Federal Way. He’s a driver for MSC’s Federal Way Food Bank. Two to three mornings a week, he gets up early and goes to local grocery stores and stores to pick up donations in one of MSC’s delivery vans.
After serving during World War II, Hank lived and worked in California. Being a Washington native, the weather was too warm for him in California, so he moved back up to Washington in the late 1940’s. At that time, the Southcenter area was primarily used for dairy production and Hank became a dairy driver. Hank remembers grazing land for cattle where all the shops are now located and the number of dairies that were in operation at that time. As the dairies started to disappear, Hank transitioned to a position as a driver with Boeing and eventually retired in 1984.
With a lot more time on his hands, he decided he would volunteer. He started as a volunteer driver for seniors, and then found his position at MSC where he has stayed ever since.
“Volunteering gave me something to do with my time and I’m helping people,” shares Hank. “A lot of people are getting goodies that would have otherwise ended up in a dumpster. It would be a waste. It’s a good feeling to help other people.”
MSC’s Federal Way food bank distributes around 24,000 pounds of food each week to approximately 225 households. Drivers pick up on average 20,000 pounds of food a week from local stores who have pulled it from their shelves for a number of reasons. “Without our volunteer drivers, there is no way we could get this food to the warehouse to distribute to those who need it,” shares Terri Turner, MSC Food Bank Director. “We don’t have the manpower to run the food bank and serve this many people without the generosity of so many volunteers from our community, like Hank, who pick up donations, as well as those who sort food and work in the food bank when it is open.”
The food bank is open Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 10am-2pm, and the 4th Thursday of the month from 5-6pm. If you or someone you know may be interested in volunteering, please fill out a volunteer inquiry online at http://mschelps.org/getinvolved/volunteer/volunteerform/ or contact Diane Lyons at 253-835-7678, ext. 105.