Over the past month working at Mid-Ohio Foodbank, I’ve had several new and exciting learning opportunities, aside from my primary project. I am lucky enough to be supervised by the Foodbank’s grants manager. Through my coursework and field experience, I have learned about the importance of grants as a reliable and consistent funding source and therefore have always wanted to gain experience and exposure to grants. Grant writing and grant management are extremely valuable skills to obtain as an aspiring nonprofit professional, and I have practiced these skills by assisting with the preparation of grant proposals and grant reports. I have also learned about the commonalities and diversity among grant requests for proposal. These differences and similarities are oftentimes a manifestation of the grant type, whether it is a federal, state, or local government grant, a corporation grant, or a foundation grant. Mid-Ohio Foodbank has a variety of funding sources, and as a result there has been a great variation in my learning opportunities.
I have also recently been involved in Operation Feed, the Foodbank’s annual community-wide drive. Each year we join forces with over 100 local businesses, schools, civic groups, and individuals to raise critically needed resources. These local organizations hold internal fundraising events events, such as trivia contests, mini golf tournaments, lip sync battles and more to raise funds as an organization. These funds then come to Mid-Ohio Foodbank and provide millions of meals to our hungry neighbors. These events not only bring employees of these organizations together to achieve a common goal, but they do so in an engaging and fun way and create a large impact on the community. The drive runs from March until June.
With 3 weeks left of the Fellowship, I am starting to wrap everything up and finish my project. In my next post I will reflect on lessons learned and what I gained from this experience.