Prentice Brown has a long history as a volunteer with Sacramento Food Bank & Family Services (SFBFS) dating back to 1999. Today, he is a valuable, dependable and hardworking volunteer at monthly food distributions.
Back in 1999, he was referred to SFBFS to complete community service volunteer hours. He helped with food sorting and distribution. To his surprise, he enjoyed his time and kept returning to volunteer. He met Blake Young, SFBFS’ President & CEO, and maintained a connection with Blake over the years.
In 2003, Prentice started his own janitorial business and Blake gave him his first contract – for services at SFBFS’ Saca Community Learning Center. Prentice recalls the gratitude he felt to serve an organization that had given him such a good experience.
Recently, after returning from living out of state, Prentice found himself back in Sacramento and looking for something meaningful to do. He called Blake, who invited him to return as a volunteer. Prentice found his niche volunteering at Produce for All and Food for Seniors distributions.
At Food for Seniors distributions, boxes of food are distributed to low-income senior citizens. Prentice particularly enjoys working with the seniors, “They are so appreciative!” He recalls serving as an intern in an elder care facility when he was a college student, “That experience had a big impact on me.” He thinks it may be why he enjoys working with the Food for Seniors program. “At food distributions we’re able to check in on our regular senior clients. When we don’t see somebody, we worry about them.”
Prentice, a burn survivor of 29 years, is grateful for the opportunity to give back and help those in need. “It’s given me a purpose,” he reflects. “I’ve been through a lot, and it’s a great feeling to be useful. When you have a job, you receive pay, but that’s nothing like the feeling you get when you’re working for free.”
Prentice plans to continue volunteering with SFBFS staff and fellow volunteers as much as he can, “I keep coming back because of all the good experiences with the people we serve.”
Director of Volunteer Services & Community Engagement
Sacramento Food Bank & Family Services