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Press Release: Summer Interns

Open Table Graduates 48 Summer Interns

Local high school students satisfy community service requirements while also learning about food insecurity

Local high school students satisfy community service requirements while also learning about food insecurity

Concord and Maynard, MA (August 16, 2021) – Open Table, the Concord and Maynard charity dedicated to fighting hunger and building healthy communities, announced today that it has graduated 48 local high school students from its summer internship program. Participating students were exposed to each of the different volunteer roles – from cooking and packing mobile meals to pantry distribution and fulfilling online orders – while also learning how they can support food relief in their local community.

“What really surprised me was how much was actually happening,” said summer intern Keagan Strelzoff. “I didn’t know how big a problem food insecurity was until I took the internship. I learned a lot on how to work together as a team, which I have not had to do before. It was a great time to work at Open Table, and I really learned a lot.”

The Open Table summer internship program, which is open to all high school and college students, provides the opportunity for young people to get involved with Open Table and gain first-hand experience in non-profit food relief through volunteering and giving back to their community. Students work with staff to stock Open Table’s fresh market pantry, distribute thousands of pounds of food and create fresh meals for distribution from surplus donations, while developing leadership, teamwork, workplace, and civic participation skills.

“This year’s program consisted of six week-long sessions with eight students in each session working Monday to Thursday and putting in approximately 20 hours each week. It’s a great way for students to gain experience working within the community while also learning about food insecurity and what people are doing to combat it,” said Matt Baird, Open Table summer internship program volunteer coordinator. “Our intention is that a majority of the interns will continue to volunteer on a weekly basis or in some capacity.”

Every week over 180 volunteers work together to run the Open Table pantry, meals, and mobile programs. They work in two-hour shifts, Monday through Thursday, 9:00 am to 6:30 pm, at Open Table’s 33 Main Street location in Maynard.  In addition, Open Table has many behind the scenes opportunities, such as fundraising, event planning, administrative support, transportation and board membership.

To learn more about volunteer opportunities at Open Table, contact: [email protected]

 

Open Table summer interns (left to right) Juliette Downie-Aiche of Maynard and Gina Abraham and Belle Hu of Acton-Boxborough school district help out in the Maynard pantry.