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Student Volunteers have played an important role from the inception of Everyone’s Harvest. The Marina residents participating in the launch of EH witnessed how a student, empowered and supported, can make positive community change. This beginning led Everyone’s Harvest to create the Volunteer Mentoring Program, actively engaging students in a nonprofit organization working for food justice.
Through a partnership started in 2003 with the Service Learning Institute of CSUMB, Everyone’s Harvest has engaged over 400 university students in everything from writing grant proposals to leading educational booths at the farmers’ markets. Since 2011, the program has expanded by partnering with CalServes AmeriCorps, which allows the program to provide more high-impact service opportunities.
Everyone’s Harvest volunteer opportunities do more than just help the nonprofit function. Volunteers gain an understanding about nonprofit work and the local food movement. To support this experience, volunteers receive a detailed orientation, engage in regular check-ins with Everyone’s Harvest staff, and are offered opportunities for group and individual learning. One student, Sonia Olmos, summarizes her experience: “I have gained a deeper understanding of how nonprofits work, the importance of my food choices, and the true value of farmers in society through my volunteer work with Everyone’s Harvest.”