Manna Food Project

Volunteer Program Updates
- December 7, 2020 -

COVID-19 has brought unexpected challenges to our community. As a result, Manna has developed several ways to reduce the risk of transmission and keep our volunteers safe while continuing to provide food for the hungry.

Here is a general overview of the changes we have made thus far to our procedures.  

Individual and Group Volunteering

  • Individuals and groups are required to schedule volunteer shifts in advance. To ensure proper social distancing, walk-in volunteer opportunities are currently unavailable.  

  • Individuals will have the opportunity to partner with others during their shift (in groups up to 4) or to work alone. Please let Manna staff members know your preference and your comfort level working with others.

  • Friend or family groups are limited to 6 individuals, including children, for each work area.



  • Manna’s Food Rescue Program has been suspended since March 2020. We are currently unsure when the program will resume operation.  

  • Our “Food 4 Kids” Backpack Program continues to be priority.
    • Volunteers are needed to help assemble backpacks—shifts are currently available each week Monday through Friday.

    • Volunteer drivers and riders are needed to deliver backpacks to area schools. Couples or close friends are preferred for this task, since volunteers are in close proximity to each other while driving to each destination.

  • Manna Community Food Pantry will continue to distribute pre-assembled food boxes and bags of fresh/frozen food as a drive-thru, curbside service until further notice.

    • Each pantry date requires one volunteer for client registration, one for setup, and one for general assistance.

    • Volunteers are also needed to assemble food boxes—shifts are usually available each week Monday through Friday.

Volunteer Responsibilities

  • Everyone who enters our facility must wear a mask over their mouth and nose at all times, except while eating and drinking.

  • All are required to complete a COVID-19 screening form, which includes a temperature check. Anyone who exhibits a temperature over 100 degrees or any other symptoms of COVID-19 (or who has been in close contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19) will be politely asked to leave and encouraged to seek guidance from a healthcare professional.

  • Volunteers should wash their hands upon entry and follow good hygiene practices (such as wearing gloves while packing produce, social distancing, and sanitizing hands and workspaces frequently) while at our facility.

  • Volunteers are encouraged to remain vigilant during their shift as well as outside of Manna.

  • Volunteers are also encouraged to voice any health questions or safety concerns to Manna staff members.

  • Individuals that are especially at risk of COVID-19, including seniors and those with compromised immune systems or chronic conditions, should consider the risks of exposure that volunteering at Manna or any organization might bring.


In the case of a possible COVID-19 exposure, Manna will cancel volunteer shifts out of an abundance of caution. In the case of a confirmed exposure, Manna will contact all affected individuals as required by the Health Department of Northwest Michigan.


Stay informed! Subscribe to our volunteer email newsletter. You can also follow Manna's Facebook page and website for news.

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General Interests

Backpack Program

Activity Shifts Start End
Backpack Assembly 315 4/21/2021 12/17/2021
Backpack Driver - Monday 1 4/19/2021 5/31/2021
Backpack Driver - Tuesday 1 4/20/2021 6/1/2021
Backpack Driver - Wednesday 0 4/21/2021 5/19/2021
Backpack Rider - Monday 1 4/19/2021 5/31/2021
Backpack Rider - Tuesday 3 4/20/2021 6/1/2021
Backpack Rider - Wednesday 0 4/21/2021 5/19/2021

Food Rescue

Using Manna vehicles, pick up food from restaurants, grocery stores, and other businesses and return to Manna for distribution. 

Activity Shifts Start End
8 a.m. Run - Driver 116 4/19/2021 12/17/2021
8 a.m. Run - Rider 102 4/26/2021 12/17/2021


Activity Shifts Start End
Office Assistant 42 4/19/2021 6/30/2021


Activity Shifts Start End
Client Registration 65 4/20/2021 12/28/2021
Pantry Setup & Assistance 49 4/20/2021 12/28/2021


Activity Shifts Start End
Food Repacking 70 4/20/2021 12/16/2021

Feeding the hungry in Northern Michigan

Manna Food Project is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization with the mission to help feed the hungry in Northern Michigan. Manna operates a food rescue program, a food distribution center (food bank), a weekly food pantry, and the “Food 4 Kids” backpack program. Manna works with over 50 partner food pantries, community kitchens, and human service agencies to provide supplemental food to over 42,000 households each year. Manna is a partner organization of the national Feeding America food bank network and operates in Antrim, Charlevoix, and Emmet counties.