Webb City Farmers Market customers this fall may have noticed some different volunteers – different in that they’re young.
The young volunteers are both local and international.
Davit Andreasyan was the first foreign exchange student to ask Roen Procter, the market manager, if he could fulfill his required 50 hours of community service as a “Marketeer.”
Davit, from Armenia, lives with a host family in Mindenmines and attends Liberal High School. Procter says she believes Davit’s connection to the market is his host mother, who occasionally shops at the market.
Davit spread the word to other foreign exchange students in the area. One of them is Giorgi Balanchivadze, from Geogia, the country, who is a student at Webb City High School.
International students at Missouri Southern State University became market volunteers after Procter set out the Marketeer application forms at the college’s Ag Expo.
Marketeer application forms are at the information table.
Bryce and Jordan Dickinson help vendors set up during a recent market.
Two young homegrown volunteers are Bryce and Jordan Dickinson. They were urged to help out by their grandfather, Ron Lankford, a member of the market board of directors. Look for them to keep volunteering on their own because they say they find it’s rewarding to help market vendors and customers.
Procter, who got started as the market manager in June, says she’s learned “kids are looking for ways to volunteer. “I’m really going to lean into that next year (2024).”
The young recruits supplement a core of adult volunteers, which has grown during the past year.
Roen is reporting to the vendors that “we had 2,000 volungeer hours logged in for 2023, which at $15 an hour would equate to $30,000!
“Volunteers are essential to the success of our market, and we appreciate all the hard work and dedication they provide. Encourage your friends and family, as well as yourself, to volunteer, even if it’s just for one market. Volunteers keep (vendor) fees down!”
“There’s always an opportunity to volunteer,” says Procter.
For more information, pick up an volunteer application form while at the market. They’re at the information table.
Saki Goto serves breakfast burritos.