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Grow With Us

Want to give back to your community in an incredibly rewarding way?  We depend on volunteers to make the CFI magic happen, and love matching individual strengths to volunteer roles.  Contact us today to learn more, or you can also check out our calendar of events to see volunteer opportunities.  You'll find contact information for each event listed, or you can call 740.593.5971 or email for more information.

Already a volunteer?  Find volunteer resources at the bottom of this page.  



Every year, volunteers log well over 2,000 hours with CFI helping us grow a community where everyone has equitable access to a thriving and sustainable local food system.  What is the value of over 2,000 hours?  Given the national hourly volunteer rate of $29.95, those 2,000 hours translate to $59,900 donated to CFI's mission.  But that far undervalues the actual work volunteers do.  How do you place a monetary value on changing the world?  "Changing the world" sounds like an exaggeration, but isn’t that what happens when you impact lives and nourish a community?  

In just one hour, CFI volunteers can: 

  • Tend multiple garden plots, feeding pollinators and families, strengthening human and non-human ecosystems.
  • Participate in a Board discussion that shapes the future of our organization.
  • Purchase produce from local farmers, building relationships with the people who grow the food we share and ensuring that the food we share is good for people along the entire supply chain. 
  • Share food with Veggie Van customers and talk with them about how they plan to prepare their veggies, providing social interaction and kitchen confidence. 
  • Teach a School Gardens lesson, inspiring an entire classroom of future gardeners to love nature and food.   

What will you gain from volunteering with CFI? You will know that you are contributing in any of the above ways, ultimately helping us grow a better future.  Volunteer hours may also satisfy work or classroom requirements, and we pride ourselves in working closely with volunteers to ensure the experience provides the professional development you’re looking for.  You’ll learn a ton about food and our food system, learn about life in rural Appalachia, and get to know our vast network of community partners.  You’ll learn about yourself, and learn that each one of us has the power to make a positive difference in the world.    

Below you’ll find recurring needs.  If these aren’t exactly what you’re looking for, feel free to reach out


Large Volunteer Groups

Are you looking for a volunteer opportunity for a large group?  We have periodic projects that are a good opportunity for many people to help for one or two hours, such as laying mulch, large-scale Community Garden upkeep, or harvesting. 

Volunteer groups that fit the following criteria work best: 

  • Time of Year: Spring to Late Fall (April - October)
  • Maximum # of hours: 2
  • Maximum # of volunteers: 15
  • Minimum amount of time to plan event: one month

What can CFI offer to enrich your group volunteer event?

  • An introduction to Community Food Initiatives, food insecurity, and Appalachia Ohio
  • Assigned tasks with clear instructions
  • 'Reflection of Service' circle at the end of the event

What should you ensure all of your volunteers bring to the event?

  • Comfortable clothes that can get dirty
  • Plenty of water, preferably in a reusable water bottle
  • Closed toed shoes

Feel that your group of volunteers would have a blast with our organization?  Talk to us:

Information and Resources for Volunteers

Current and prospective volunteers can access forms and documents we share during volunteer onboarding HERE

Incoming and current Board members can access onboarding materials, including the application form, HERE.  

Thank You to All of Our Community Collaborations and Sponsors!