February’s Volunteer of the Month: Heidi Johnson
Meet Heidi Johnson, the one and only Farmers Market Glean Team Leader at the Larchmont Farmers Market. Heidi is truly someone special in the Food Forward family. She single-handedly began our produce recovery at the Larchmont Farmers Market in March of 2014 to ensure that food insecure Los Angeles City College students receive fresh fruits and veggies, and she and her team of equally dedicated volunteers have been handling all elements of the glean every Sunday since. Heidi has a real passion for helping those in need and dedicates herself to service not only through her work with Food Forward but also as the Resource Center Manager at LACC. She does it all with such style (check out that Halloween outfit!), positivity and commitment that she has become an integral part of the Food Forward team. Read more about the amazing Heidi below!
So tell me, how did you get started with Food Forward?
I got started with Food Forward when I was President of the Associated Student Government at Los Angeles City College last Spring 2014. The director of the LACC Foundation, Robert Schwartz, informed us about this wonderful opportunity to provide a service to the large homeless population here on campus, many of whom are veterans and former foster youth. I jumped at the chance to be the change I wanted to see in the community.
What are some other projects you’re working on that you’d like to share?
Now I am the Resource Center Manager at LACC. The Resource Center is like a thrift store but it’s free to LACC students. As manager of the Resource Center, I am responsible for getting donations from faculty, staff, students and the community to offer to the students that are in need. We accept clean, gently used clothing items, toiletries, bedding, and non-perishable food items. The Food Forward program compliments this service nicely. Many of the clients that utilize the Resource Center also receive produce from our super Sunday gleans.
What is your favorite memory working with Food Forward?
My favorite memory working with Food Forward is the family community we have built between the team of volunteers and the people who come and get the food. We exchange recipes and look out for one another. The volunteers make it happen. Without the awesome team that supports me, I wouldn’t be able to serve so many people. I love my Food Forward volunteer family.
Any wisdom you’d like to share with the world about life?
“Be impeccable with your word. Don’t take things personally. Don’t make assumptions. Always do your best!” The Four Agreements By Don Miguel Ruiz