Mr Isiah Baker

After retirement some people look forward to taking it easy and sleeping in everyday. Not  Mr. Isiah Baker, Foodbank volunteer for more than 14 years. “I tried doing nothing after I retired, but that only lasted about a month,” says Mr. Baker. Every weekday morning he arrives at the Foodbank at 7:00 am to start his day, making copies of the forms that he’ll use to assist the agencies that are coming to the warehouse to pick up their orders and shop through the daily salvaged “specials”. Once the agency representatives are done picking out the items they want for their pantry or prepared meal program, Mr. Baker is there at the scales, weighing everything and recording it on their checkout form. His voluntary workday ends by noon, after he has cleaned up, swept, and put things away. “I just love the fellowship, getting to know people from the churches and other groups that come here for help,” Baker continues, “All my life somebody had been doing something good for me; when I retired I just wanted to do something for someone else.” Also very active in his church, Mr. Baker recalls one day, when it was slow he was studying his Sunday school lesson for the coming weekend, and a lady from an agency asked him what church he attended. “She was from the same town, and knew everyone I knew in the church, although I don’t remember seeing her before,” that’s when he realized the wide range of people the Foodbank helps. “It showed me just how close to home this is. You never know who is helping get food to people who need it.” Mr. Baker also contributes financially to the Foodbank, as well as volunteering some 1,300 hours annually. “My volunteering can’t help everybody [that comes to the Foodbank], so the money I give helps the people I don’t get to help by working here,” Baker modestly adds. He first got involved through his church, when they joined the Foodbank as a member agency. “I just liked it, and what it does for people,” he says, adding with a smile “That’s what it’s all about – helping other people.”