Friends Who Volunteer Together, Stay Together
By Monique Garcia | Photo by Alexiz Gomez
"If a community comes together to help the community, all ships are raised.” - Kristen Cox, Executive Director of Long Beach Community Table.
Let’s face it, everyone is busy. Even if you have free time to volunteer, many places are looking for long term commitments rather than the few hours you have to spare here and there.
Thankfully, we have found some meaningful volunteer opportunities that need little to no sign-up! And what better way to make friends than by connecting with others over a shared cause? After all, volunteering doesn’t just make a community stronger; it also brings people together.
“Food is Freedom”
Long Beach Community Table is a nonprofit organization that provides nutritious food, hygiene products, clothing, and other basic necessities to Greater Long Beach. The organization was started by Kristen Cox and friends.
“I believe food is freedom,” says Kristen. “By providing access to basic necessities like food, hygiene, and clothing, we can also relieve stress and give people dignity.”
The activist group previously traveled the country supporting indigenous people fighting oil pipelines and providing hurricane relief. After some time working as a traveling activist, Kristen realized she wanted to bring change on a more local level. Her team was inspired to start building the organization that would flourish into LB Community Table.
What started as a small single-van operation grew into a network that feeds more than 3,000 people per week. Now, Kristen and her team run a warehouse with a food pantry, maintain produce gardens, and distribute food and goods every weekend at local parks.
LB Community Table is especially proud of its Homebound Program, a program that delivers to seniors, immune-compromised individuals, people with disabilities, and others who aren’t able to make it to distribution sites.
Many Ways to Help
Long Beach Community Table has many programs that would benefit from your time: Food/Hygiene Distribution; Homebound Packing/Delivery; Garden Building Team; Pick-up/Drop-off Team; and Office Administration and Communications.
So if you have the time, help strengthen your community and connect with wonderful people while you’re at it. LB Community Table needs volunteers daily, so there’s a lot of flexibility to meet your schedule. If you are interested, visit their site at https://www.longbeachcommunitytable.com/volunteer to download their volunteer app or contact LBCommunityTable@gmail.com. LB Community Table provides t-shirts, gloves, and masks. All they need from you are your positive vibes!