Grow Financial Federal Credit Union
Three Grow team members work in the community garden
April 21, 2022

Grow Team Members Volunteer at Sulphur Springs Community School

On Friday, April 8, several Grow team members took our mission of serving people to heart by spending the afternoon volunteering at the Sulphur Springs Community School. Team members split into two groups, serving in both the food pantry and the community garden.

Sulphur Springs Community Food Pantry

The first group of volunteers served in the Sulphur Springs food pantry. Families from the Sulphur Springs Community School and the local YMCA can sign up for a meal kit and stop by to collect it. Volunteers unpacked boxes of donated goods, including cereal, canned chicken, canned veggies, soup, peanut butter and jelly. Then, they prepared two bags for each family to take home, one that contained breakfast items and one for dinner items. The staff at the food pantry also packed a refrigerator bag with essentials like milk and bread. Ryann Donahue, Content Specialist, shared, “Food insecurity affects so many people in our area. Our local food pantries need support from the community, whether that’s through donations or volunteering. I’m thankful I was able to spend time helping out and that Grow as an organization encourages us to volunteer.”

Sulphur Springs Community Garden

The school’s community learning garden was founded in 2013 as a way to bring fresh produce and a sense of civic collaboration to the Sulphur Springs area, which has been labeled a food desert. It’s now a community landmark that draws in people who may not otherwise have gardened or grown their own produce. Nicole Charles, HR Project Coordinator, said, “Everyone deserves access to fresh, nutritious food regardless of where they live.”

Volunteers spent the day gardening, planting new fruits and vegetables and assisting with general upkeep of the garden. Bernie Manlapig, Consumer Lending Business Analyst, said, “It was great to be out in the community getting my hands dirty and practicing what we preach at Grow! Maintaining a garden like that is a lot of work but knowing what it’s for makes it worth it.” Reflecting on the hard work of the day, Christian Gallardo, Underwriting/Servicing Manager, shared, “This was another testament that life is all about giving and not gaining. My back did hurt a little the next day, but my soul was happy.”

To read more about what our team is doing in the community, visit

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