AT on... Why We Volunteer

AT on... Why We Volunteer

Amber Byfield
May 21, 2009

05_21_09_farmersmkt.jpgLast night, during a volunteer shift at the midweek farmers' market, I struck up a conversation with one of the other volunteers. She works as a dietician for a hospital, and I asked her what made her want to start volunteering with this particular group.

Turns out our stories were very similar: it started with reading a book, and from there, as we both learned new ideas about sustainability and where food comes from, we felt the need to be a part of sharing it with the community...

In my case, it began last year when I read Plenty by Alisa Smith and J.B. Mackinnon. Having grown up on a farm, I understood where food came from--but somewhere in between my childhood and early adulthood, I let that connection fizzle out. And then I read Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver. And after that I started in on Michael Pollan's The Ominvore's Dilemma, and peppered in between were columns by Mark Bittman and plenty of bugs in my ear about local farmers' market.

All that information stuck, and in the course of a year I've transitioned to quite the sustainable diet. I came to realize that it's bigger than me, this whole food revolution--which is why I turned to the Sustainable Food Center to volunteer.

What about you? Do you find that as you learn more about things, you're more inclined to give back to the community in a way that upholds those things?

(Image: Flickr member Photo Mojo, licensed under Creative Commons.

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