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Program Manager, Oak Park River Forest Food Pantry

Job Summary

Food insecurity and poor nutrition go hand in hand. For those struggling with hunger, food choices are often prioritized based on an item’s cost, not its nutritional value.  Long-term effects on children experiencing hunger include lowered academic achievement, decreased emotional development, and increased health problems.  In the elderly malnutrition exacerbates diseases, decreases resistance to infection, and extends hospital stays. In providing emergency hunger relief, Oak Park River Forest Food Pantry aims to deliver the very items our clients need most:  nutrient-dense and protein-rich foods.  The Nutrition Programs Assistant (NPA) is critical to the success of that goal by connecting targeted groups to healthy food through special programs.  Thus, the NPA must be skilled in communicating and working with people of all ages, abilities, and walks of life.  The NPA also supervises the volunteers who work in these programs.  By combining outreach and volunteer management, the NPA helps build connections across age, ability, and interest, thus further integrating volunteers into the service model.

Job Responsibilities

Product/Program Coordination:

Home Delivery:

  • Liaise with targeted social impact agencies to coordinate the delivery of groceries to clients
  • Communicate monthly with individual clients to confirm participation and dietary needs
  • Collaborate with Registered Dietitian in revising new clients’ dietary restrictions to ensure our menu plans adhere to such
  • Lead and guide volunteers through their shifts               

 Assist with all logistic aspects of Home Delivery including:

  • Ensuring dietary plans for targeted medical needs are effectively coordinated
  • Modifying distribution routes as client usage changes
  • Recruiting volunteers for program delivery day
  • Troubleshooting problems in the packaging and delivery process as they arise
  • Assisting with data collection and entry into Salesforce and Food Bank Manager

Summer Meals:

  • Work with Program Manager to ensure site eligibility and readiness of various community agencies (2-5 agencies)
  • Assist with marketing outreach process targeting potential beneficiaries
  • Attend all required state and local SM training and incorporate the information learned into volunteer orientation
  • Assist in the development of programming for each site, including partnering/collaborating with other social agencies to provide educational activities during meal times.
  • Coordinate data collection for the assessment/evaluation process

Surplus Project:

  • Assist the Program Manager with day-to-day operations of the Surplus Project.
  • Troubleshoot problems as they arise during daily meal deliveries
  • Maintain meal tracking spreadsheets for all sites
  • Update Surplus Project supplies inventory and work with partners to manage ordering more supplies

Social Services:

  • Work with Social Services Coordinator to ensure ALL walk-in clients receive the assistance they need within business and distribution hours.
  • Help oversee Social Services Volunteers to ensure they have all information, supplies, and clear direction to complete their shifts.

Volunteer Management:

  • Work with pantry staff to schedule volunteers for all programs as needed
  • Supervise volunteers in each of the programs
  • Plan and implement protocols and training for food packing and delivery for Home Delivery
  • Assist in the volunteer orientation/training process for Summer Meals, ensuring all agency-specific, state, and federal requirements are met

General Responsibilities:

  • Attend training and community meetings as approved by supervisor
  • Prepare program outreach document as needed in collaboration with Communication and Data Coordinator
  • Maintain flexibility with time, tasks, and priorities
  • Assume additional responsibilities as necessary or as assigned by Program Manager to accomplish the purpose and goals of the Pantry
  • Crossed-train with food pantry registration procedures

Minimum Qualifications

  • Must be at least 21 years of age.
  • High School Diploma with 2-year’s related experience minimum. College Degree and related experience in nutrition preferred
  • Food sanitation licensure (or willingness and ability to achieve it once hired—fees paid by the Pantry)
  • Excellent interpersonal and problem-solving skills
  • Ability to work with and encourage interaction between people of all ages and abilities
  • Current driver’s license 
  • Strong oral and written communication skills
  • Strong organizational and time-management skills
  • Must be a team-player and detail-oriented
  • Bi-lingual skills (English/Spanish) are a plus

Hours of Work

Member Status and Hours: Full-time AmeriCorps Member; 1700 hours to be completed within contracted timeframe.  Routine schedule Monday through Friday but must be willing to work occasional evening or weekend hours.  

Environment:  Multi-level work area: administrative offices/work space not fully accessible to the mobility impaired.  Must be physically capable of walking up and down stairs and be able to lift 40 pounds. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. Workplace is a smoke- and drug-free environment.  Equal opportunity employer.


  • Living Allowance: $13,732 to be distributed in equal allotments every two weeks within the contract term.
  • Education Award: Upon successful completion of the member's term of service, the member will receive an education award from the National Service Trust in the amount of $5,730.
  • Health care insurance for the AmeriCorps member
  • Child care assistance if applicable.