Baking enthusiast turned volunteer driver!

We love to learn more about our brilliant volunteers and this week it’s the turn of one of our new volunteers, Sam Payne. 

Tell us a bit more about yourself…

I’m 32 years old who loves baking, the pub and swimming. In fact, I’ve got big plans to re-train as a baker very soon. I also love Bristol so it’s great to be supporting an organisation that does so much in this city!

What brought you to FareShare South West? 

My car mainly! No, my real answer is that a family friend has been involved with FareShare South West for some time now and suggested I volunteer. 

What are your main roles or responsibilities when you’re at FareShare South West?

I mainly drive for FareShare, delivering to amazing organisations like homeless shelters, food banks and community centres all over the South West. This means unloading the vans and delivering crates of fresh & ambient food safely. 

What has been the best bit about being a FareShare South West volunteer? 

It’s got to be the people. I’ve met so many interesting people from all different walks of life – both at the warehouse and when out delivering to the organisations on the front line. Despite all the bad news at the moment, it’s reminding me that there are a lot of brilliant individuals and communities doing all they can to look after and support others. 

Anything surprised you whilst volunteering with us?

What has surprised me about FareShare is the scale on which it can deliver as an organisation. The volumes of food that come in and get redistributed are mind boggling. What’s shocked me most though is the sheer size and complexity of the problems many of the organisations we deliver food to are facing. It’s struck me that so many of these organisations tackling massive social issues, are volunteer led themselves. 

What would you say to anyone thinking about volunteering at FareShare South West?

Get involved! A lot of people are furloughed and may be feeling a bit purposeless, but giving your time and experience keeps you busy and means you’re directly supporting those affected by the crisis coronavirus has caused. If you’re not local to FareShare South West’s warehouse consider supporting one of the many organisations they support, like the community centres or food banks. 

A big thanks to Sam Payne for letting us in on his experience and just a note to say the whole FareShare South West team of staff and volunteers would only be too happy to taste test any bakes you want to practise!

For more information about volunteering, visit: