Lauren Pyle: Serving with a Smile
If you meet Lauren Pyle, you might remember her smile. That’s because Lauren likes to have a smile on her face wherever she goes in the hopes she might put one on someone else’s face, too. Lauren has had a compassionate heart for a long time, and for nearly two years, she’s brought hope to our neighbors facing hunger by volunteering at Ozarks Food Harvest.
Lauren is no stranger to volunteering and serving her community. When she was younger, she spent time with her parents serving meals to people experiencing homelessness through a church program. Her experiences there sparked a passion for helping people from a young age that has made her appreciate her time at Ozarks Food Harvest even more.
“It’s so hard to see people that are hungry,” Lauren shares, “And thinking about kids that the only time they get food is through school – I mean, it’s just heartbreaking. Food is something that’s just a basic human need and something that everyone deserves to have.”
One of Lauren’s favorite things about Ozarks Food Harvest is how many people she can reach in just a three-hour volunteer session. In a typical session, one volunteer will help provide more than 300 meals, and multiple volunteers working together can provide hundreds more. From the Weekend Backpack Program for kids to the Senior Food program for older adults, Lauren appreciates that The Food Bank’s hunger relief efforts reach a wide variety of people.
She explains, “I think it’s important to know you never know who hunger is affecting. It could be your neighbor or a classmate or someone at work. Ozarks Food Harvest has a lot of working parts, and that’s why volunteers are so essential to make sure all those steps get done in a timely manner so that they can go out and feed people.”
At Ozarks Food Harvest, we never tire of hearing our volunteers’ stories. We’re grateful to have compassionate volunteers like Lauren, who extends her kindness to the neighbors we serve. Thank you, Lauren, for putting smiles on the faces of thousands of our neighbors in need.