BY ERIN PESUT
Hurricane Matthew wreaked havoc on Cumberland County in October 2016. While the damage was significant so was the outpouring of local support like local volunteer Corey Brown who jumped right in to help and to lead at Second Harvest.
Julia Morales, Program Coordinator at Second Harvest said, “When I came in that Saturday, I said, ‘Corey, you’realready here?’ He beat me to work, and he said, ‘I just finished working 100 hours at PWC,’ and I said, ‘Excuse me...and you’re here?’ And he said, ‘Yeah, we’ve got to get
it done.’ What amazes me about Corey is his wonderfully positive attitude. He says things like, ‘We can do it. We can makeit happen.’ We so appreciate that. We love the passion of people who want to give back.”
Below is a question and answer with Brown about the importance of volunteering.
Q: How long have you lived in
A: Since first grade, so that’s 31 years.
Q: What do you do for work?
A: I am a Supervisor at Public Works
Q: Where do you volunteer?
A: I’m a volunteer at Second Harvest
Food Bank of Southeast North Carolina.
I really enjoy helping people. Even
walking into the grocery store, I’ll help
load groceries. I’ll buy people food.
Q: Where did you learn to be so giving?
A: It’s because of the way I was raised,
by my grandmother. There’s a lot to be
gained by just helping people.
Q: What was the first nice thing you can
ever remember doing for someone?
A: I helped change tires even when I was
14 years old. I was in a CVS and I came
outside. It was an older lady. I could tell
she needed help, so I helped her change
Q: Can you talk about the morning you
volunteered after Hurricane Matthew?
A: I was one of the first people. That’s a
trait of mine. I’m always early. I’d rather
be early than be late. So basically, going
from the storm, I had a lot of adrenaline
and I couldn’t sleep and so I said, I’m
going to go volunteer. Ron Pringle [Chief
Executive] told me I was going to be a
team leader for the day. He gave me a
task of 15 things that needed to be done.
Volunteers started trickling in and at one
point there were 30 to 40 people. They
work from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. and that day
I worked 7 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Q: What’s your favorite thing to do?
A: I really like interacting with the people
who come in. And I like meeting people.
That’s why I’m a supervisor [at PWC]. I
like to work with people, not up above
Q: What did you do that day at Second
A: We sorted all kinds of things, like
produce. We consolidated food to be
handed out. We went through the cooler.
We stocked and moved food to the front.
Everybody wants to do something here.
People bring their kids and there are 7, 8,
9, 10-year-old kids helping. It’s great. It
teaches good morals.
Q: What do you enjoy doing in your free
A: Watching movies, hiking and doing
adventuresome things. I’m going to visit
my younger brother who has a goat
farm in South Carolina.
Q: What’s something we might not
know about you right away?
A: I’m a very quiet person. I do not look
for the limelight at all.
Q: What are your thoughts about life
after Hurricane Matthew?
A: I’ve seen a lot of damage and it’s
really sad to see people lose everything.
A lot of the hardest hit areas are not
where people had insurance, and they’re
the ones that really need the help. It
was nice to see how the city bonded
together. It’d be nice to see that when
there hadn’t been a natural disaster.
If you are interested in volunteering at Second Harvest Food Bank for Volunteer Saturdays, applications are onlineat hungercantwait.org, or you can send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or call (910) 485-6923.
The Second Harvest Food Bank of Southeast North Carolina works to eliminate the cycle
of hunger through a wide range of programs and services. They are achieved through our
member agencies and local, state, and national partners.
The Food Bank’s primary service area includes Bladen, Cumberland, Duplin, Harnett, Hoke, Robeson, and Sampsoncounties. The food bank provides nutritious food to those at risk of hunger through anetwork of over 250 non-profit members.
There are over 200,000 individuals or 18% at risk of hunger within the seven counties our
partner agencies call home.
FACT: It would take more than $850 million to meet food needs in our service area.
FACT: More than 20% of individuals in our service area are critically food insecure.
FACT: More than 27% of children in our area are critically food insecure, thereby impacting
their ability to grow and learn appropriately.
Second Harvest’s Most Needed Items:
• Canned Fruits & Veggies
• Canned Meat
• Canned Beans & Soup
• Whole Grain Pasta & Rice
• Peanut Butter
• Hygiene Items
• Household Items
• Paper Products