Brett Carolus is a St. Joseph native and is employed with the Hillyard companies. He says he appreciated the work of Second Harvest long before he ever became a Board member. “Hunger should have no place in our country,” says Brett. “That’s one reason I wanted to get involved with Second Harvest.”
Although he felt the desire to help those who were food insecure, it was through Second Harvest that the full scope of the area’s need became clear. “Second Harvest serves individuals and families across 19 counties, and more than half of them are either under the age of 18 or over age 65,” he says. “Helping so many neighbors overcome food insecurity is something we can all take part in.”
Brett is convinced that Second Harvest makes a true difference in people’s lives. “Second Harvest will provide nearly 6 million meals this year and each one of those meals makes the day a little better for our neighbors,” he says.
During his service on the Second Harvest Board, he has also noted positive changes in food delivery. In the past, many food banks placed an emphasis on the amount of food provided to families, but in recent years that has changed to a stronger focus on providing food with high nutritional value. “This goes beyond feeding people to nourishing minds and bodies and contributing to better overall health and wellness. This is an important, positive change in the organization’s goal and mindset,” he adds.
Working toward providing nutritional foods is a goal Brett proudly shares with a team of enthusiastic volunteers who put in a combined 22,000 hours of service each year. He shares that goal with the dedicated staff members of Second Harvest who, along with the volunteers, continue to make the organization a true community success. He also shares this goal with the many local businesses and organizations that support Second Harvest through financial giving, food donations and food collection efforts.
Alongside the important changes that have already taken place in the vision of Second Harvest, Brett has more dreams for the future. “One idea I’d love to see realized is a mobile food pantry to better serve areas outside of Buchanan County – because our neighbors who need help don’t always live next door,” says Brett.
He would also like to see more community members getting involved with the work and mission of Second Harvest, including more individuals willing to take on internships and volunteer roles to support the nutrition initiatives currently in place. During his service on the Board at Second Harvest Community Food Bank, Brett has been an outstanding example of bringing into action the ideas a person says they believe.
“I hope others will take action toward helping people in our area communities who live with food insecurity,” he says. “Together we can fight hunger in our part of this great nation.”