Information for Volunteers
Glean: verb, to gather (leftover grain or other produce) after a harvest.
Thank you for your interest in volunteering with Backyard Bounty! By signing up for a volunteering event or opportunity, you are agreeing to the Terms of Participation and to the Foodbank of Santa Barbara County’s Liability Release Waiver (available to view when signing up for a volunteer opportunity).
Please read the FAQ below to best prepare for your next gleaning event!
Frequently Asked Questions
How should I prepare for a glean?
- Get a good night’s sleep the night before a glean!
- Bring plenty of water and snacks.
- Use the restroom before arriving to a glean site. We will not always have access to a restroom at a given site.
- Wear sunblock, close-toed shoes, and comfortable clothing to be working outside. A hat is a good idea to keep sun out of your eyes and branches away from your face.
- We provide gloves, safety glasses, clippers, harvest knives, and other harvest equipment as necessary. Feel free to bring your own gloves and clippers if you like!
- We also bring special orchard ladders for fruit tree gleans. The Glean Leader will provide basic safety instructions for operating the ladder and we encourage you to watch this great ladder safety video from our friends at GleanSLO. No volunteer under the age of 18 is allowed to use the ladders.
Can I bring my kids?
- We believe that gleaning with Backyard Bounty is a valuable educational experience and a wonderful way for young people to give back to their community, however, not all gleaning opportunities are appropriate for children. Each gleaning event posted will specify whether it is kid-friendly. All youth under the age of 18 must be registered for the event and be accompanied by a registered adult volunteer.
Can I bring a pet?
- Our gleaning events take place at a variety of properties, many of them private homes. Please be respectful of the property owner and leave your furry friends at home to nap!
Do I have to stay the whole time?
- Because space is limited, we ask that you sign-up for an event only when you can commit to the full duration of a glean, which typically lasts 2 hours.
What if I have to cancel?
- If you need to cancel, we ask that you do so with as much advance as possible, so your spot may open up for another volunteer. To cancel, click the appropriate link in your confirmation email. You may also sign in to your volunteer account and click the “Cancel” button next to the event you can no longer attend.
Why don’t volunteers get to take some of the gleaned food home?
- While we are appreciative of the hard work volunteers do to glean fresh produce, 100% of the food that is collected is given to local hunger relief agencies that are supported by the Foodbank of Santa Barbara County. This allows us to provide full transparency to those donating produce to the Foodbank of Santa Barbara County, and ensures every piece is going to someone in need. If you’d like to learn more about our partner agencies and who receives our food, please visit foodbanksbc.org/our-impact.
If you have any other questions, please feel free to contact Samantha Gaudette, the Backyard Bounty Program Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org.