The Volunteer Connection March 2017

Mediaon February 27th, 2017Comments Off on The Volunteer Connection March 2017
Meet the Volunteer Engagement Team

From Left to Right: Sara Steinkamp, Tawanda Rollins, Taylor Thomas, Maria Hernandez, Stephanie Togneri, and Jillian Young

Meet the Volunteer Engagement Team

You may have noticed a few new faces leading our volunteer efforts at the Freestore Foodbank. Each one of us is excited to be working with our outstanding volunteers.

Sara Steinkamp – Volunteer Engagement Specialist at the Customer Connection Center
Sara is from the West Side of town and her office is located at the Customer Connection Center on Liberty Street. You will run into her if you volunteer in the Liberty Street Market. Sara was the Volunteer Coordinator at the Mayerson Distribution Center when she first started at the Freestore in February 2015 and last summer she helped out at the Giving Fields while the farm manager was out on maternity leave. An interesting fact about Sara is that she loves doing pottery.

Tawanda Rollins – Manager of Volunteer Recruitment and Special Events
Tawanda is a hometown girl, born and raised in Cincinnati, but she has also lived Panama, Central America for three years with her mom. Her office is at the Customer Connection Center  located on Liberty Street, but during event season you’ll find her at the Jeff & Darlene Anderson Family Building on Central Parkway and at most of the special events. She has been at the Freestore for five years! An interesting fact about Tawanda is that she loves to prepare soul food and watch others enjoy her cooking.

Taylor Thomas – Volunteer Engagement Specialist at the Mayerson Distribution Center
Taylor is originally from Alsip, IL and joined the team in August 2016 after moving to Northern Kentucky from Central Florida. One fun fact about Taylor is that she finds cleaning therapeutic! Some of you may know Taylor as one of the Volunteer Coordinators at the Mayerson Distribution Center, but she has recently transitioned to scheduling individuals and groups for both the Distribution Center and Giving Fields. She is the voice you hear when you call our volunteer hotline or when you send us an email.

Maria Hernandez – Volunteer Coordinator at the Mayerson Distribution Center
Maria is brand new to the team; she joined the team last month and jumped right in assisting with leading groups at the Mayerson Distribution Center. She is from El Salvador and one thing that you may find interesting about Maria is that she loves to ski! The next time you’re volunteering at the Distribution Center, don’t forget to welcome her to the Freestore Foodbank!

Stephanie Togneri – Director of Volunteer Engagement
Stephanie has been with the Freestore for a little over two years now.  Her official home base is the Customer Connection Center on Liberty, but you will find her everywhere our volunteers are in action.  Like many of our team leaders, Stephanie brought groups to the Freestore for many years before joining our team.  She lives in Kenwood with her husband, Paul and her always entertaining beagle, Geno.

Jillian Young – Volunteer Coordinator at the Mayerson Distribution Center
Jillian is from Cincinnati and she joined the team in September 2016. You’ll find her leading groups and driving the forklift at the Distribution Center. Jillian’s fun fact is that she loves kayaking and is learning how to weld.  Jillian is our “Jane” or “Jillian” of all trades because she is very handy with her hands!

Feeding Hungry Children:
Check Out Power Pack (March 29 – April 15)

Check Out Power Pack KrogerCan you spare 15 – 20 minutes a week to volunteer? Have you always wanted to get involved at the Freestore, but never had the time due to a busy schedule? Well, here is your chance! There are still a few Kroger stores available for adoption through Check-Out Power Pack. This is a convenient way for Kroger customers to support the Power Pack program as they check out their groceries. Volunteers are needed to help ensure the tear coupons and coupon holders are available at each check-out counter of the store they’ve adopted. Click here to see if a Kroger store near you is up for adoption.

Stay Tuned for More Upcoming Volunteer Opportunities

Giving Fields Giving Fields
We have new exciting plans in place for The Giving Fields this year starting with a new farm manager!  Look in our April edition to learn more about our latest team member. We will start the planting season a little later this spring to hopefully miss some of those rainy days in March and April.  Volunteer opportunities will be posted online by the beginning of March for the entire growing season. We’ve had lots of requests to volunteer already, but don’t worry; there will be lots of opportunities to join in on the fun. Many of hands are needed to open the farm and start the planting process. Families, schools, groups, and individuals are all welcome to volunteer at the Giving Fields. Groups will be needed Tuesdays – Saturdays. Stay tuned for more information.

Hunger WalkVolunteer or Walk for Hunger
A Memorial Day Event – 14th Annual Hunger Walk
Lace up your shoes and volunteer for a tremendous cause. Over the last 13 years, Hunger Walk has raised more than $1 million for our partner soup kitchens, food pantries, shelters and community centers. Each step made at the event directly impacts the lives of our hungry neighbors. Spend your Memorial Day with us and volunteer or form a team and walk, run, skip, or stroll along the Ohio River. More information to come in the upcoming weeks!


Donations of canned goods are needed all year-round! If you would like to organize a canned food drive, please fill out the online form available here.

Are you interested in becoming a member of the Freestore Foodbank team? Please click here for our current employment opportunities.


Thank you to the following groups for your support February 2017!
We sincerely appreciate their continued support and contribution of their time.

Mayerson Distribution Center (Tennessee Avenue)

A Children’s Home
Campbell Soup
Cincinnati Children’s Hospital
City of Cincinnati
DePaul Cristo Rey
Fifth Third
General Cable
General Electric (GE)
Indian Hills High School
Junior League of Cincinnati
Kerry Automotive
Lakeside Presbyterian
Pep Promotions
Redeemer Church
Ross School
St. Margaret Knights of Columbus
St. Xavier High School
The Gathering
Tri-State Freethinkers
University of Cincinnati
US Bank
Webster UMC
Western Southern Financial

Liberty Street Market (Liberty Street)

Easter Seals
Seton High School

FeedingWorks: Transformational Teambuilding

Looking for a new way to strengthen your team’s ability to communicate, problem-solve and manage conflict while improving your opportunities to provide successful outcomes? Looking for an opportunity to not only grow stronger as a team internally, but to make an external impact on the community? Consider FeedingWorks, the Freestore Foodbank’s social enterprise.

FeedingWorks is a unique combination of professional leadership development and the transformational experience of a team working together to make a tangible difference in the lives of others. Teams form genuine bonds through this experience which is based on the principle of giving back while developing yourself and your team.

For more information about how your company can benefit from FeedingWorks, please visit