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Volunteer finds 'his people' at MFB New England

A strong work ethic is part of Rick Callahan's DNA. At 12 years old, he had a paper route and has been working ever since. He retired after 37 years at Traveler's Insurance and then picked up a couple of part-time jobs. During those work years, Rick always wanted to volunteer, but he was often on-call and couldn't volunteer as often as he wanted to.

"It gives my current life purpose. I always wanted to volunteer but couldn't because of my job," says Rick. "When I worked in IT, there were days I could work 12 hours, and couldn't really prove I was there. Volunteering at Midwest Food Bank, there is tangible evidence of my efforts."

At MFB, we know Rick is there; he brings energy and expertise to the MFB New England warehouse.
"Rick quickly became part of our core team because of his heart to serve," says Corey Barrette, Volunteer and Community Relations Manager. "He always arrives with a smile, is eager to learn, and is someone we can rely upon for anything from driving a forklift to tech support."

His willingness to do whatever is needed is a huge benefit to MFB. When Rick started volunteering at MFB, he worked on a food re-packaging project. He has since been certified in forklift driving and assists with inventory management and warehouse support. His IT background is also handy as MFB is starting to migrate warehouse inventory digitally. Rick says other volunteers and the staff have created a welcoming and productive atmosphere.

"Early on, when I first started volunteering, no one stopped for a break until the work was done," says Rick. "This spirit and work ethic told me, 'these are my people,' and these are people who want to be productive with the time they have to serve."

While he isn't working one of his part-time jobs or volunteering, Rick likes to be active in all sports. Rick and his wife also are exploring the national parks and have been to about half of them.

"There is a tremendous sense of teamwork at MFB," says Rick. "The people are committed, and people want to work and make this the best food bank possible." 

Rick and Colleen Callahan
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