An Intern's Summer in the Food Pantry

Updated: Apr 5

My experience interning at Hospitality House this summer was by far one of the most educational and influential parts of my four years at Appalachian State University. As a rising senior a lot of anxiety surrounded the internship field experience I've patiently awaited to complete. Thankfully, every member of the staff and the clientele made me feel immediately at home from my interview for the position all the way up to my last day as an intern. I am eternally grateful for the lessons I learned and the relationships I built during my time as an intern this summer.

The unique circumstances created by COVID-19 made my time working at Hospitality House an experience I will never forget. I spent most of my time working in the food pantry and the kitchen, both of which have changed and adapted to new safety procedures. Let me tell you it really does take a village to feed all the clients that come through our doors, whether it be through the family style dining room or the drive thru food pantry. Seeing first hand what a difference Hospitality House and other nonprofit organizations make in the lives of their clients helped me determine exactly how I envision my future career path unfolding.

I cannot believe this summer has come and gone already. I will forever cherish the memories, laughs, conversations, and I'll even miss the bruises from unloading hundreds of pounds of food each day. The deep rooted sense of community in Hospitality House can be felt from the moment you open those doors and see all the smiling faces (even under masks) greeting you. I cannot wait to continue volunteering in the food pantry, which really does feel like my second home after this summer. I just want to say one last thank you to all the staff, residents, and other clients that made me feel so welcomed and comfortable throughout my time as an intern. Y'all really are the best!!!

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Hospitality House, a regional nonprofit transitional living facility and crisis assistance resource center, serves seven rural North Carolina counties (Watauga, Wilkes, Ashe, Avery, Alleghany, Mitchell, and Yancey) providing housing, prevention, and nutrition. Since 1984, the mission of Hospitality House has been to rebuild lives and strengthen community by providing a safe, nurturing, healthy environment in which individuals and families experiencing homelessness and poverty-related crises are equipped to become self-sufficient and productive. Federal Tax ID 56-1442966.

Non-Discrimination Policy: Hospitality House does not and shall not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion (creed), gender, gender expression, age, national origin (ancestry), disability, class, income status, marital status, sexual orientation, or military status, in any of its activities or operations. These activities include, but are not limited to, hiring and firing of staff, selection of volunteers and vendors, and provision of services. We are committed to providing an inclusive and welcoming environment for all members of our staff, volunteers, subcontractors, vendors, and clients. As an intern you are expected to represent the Hospitality House and adhere to our Non-Discrimination Policy. 

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