Information for New Volunteers

Thank you for registering as a volunteer with NH Gleans! We look forward to meeting you. By volunteering with NH Gleans, you are agreeing to the Terms of Participation. Here is other helpful information.

First, registration

Everyone who attends a glean must first be registered as a volunteer. Once you are registered, you are eligible to sign up for gleans, and you don’t have to register again. You can go to the Volunteer page to renew your registration and update your contact information. You can include a password that allows you to see at once the status of your harvest signups and to get on waiting lists faster. It also gives you access to My Page, a web page that lists your contact information, current signups and harvest history.

Find out about gleans

The Gleans page is your main tool to find out about gleans. Some organizations in the NH Gleans network may send out emails or post on Facebook, but the Gleans page is the best source.

Often, we find out about crop donations on very short notice, so check your email or the Gleans page regularly.

Sign up for a glean

Open gleans are posted on the Gleans page. To sign up, click on the glean link, and then type in your name. You must type it exactly as you did when you first registered, so we can match your record in our database.

If you can spare a half hour and want to help at the glean, check the box below your name, and the glean leader will talk to you at the glean if we need help.

You must read and check off the Release and Waiver to be added to the roster. Then click on the button that says ‘Signup for this glean.’

How will I know where the glean is?

After you sign up, you’ll see a page with the address of the glean and helpful information such as whether a ladder is needed. This is the only place the actual address appears on the website so write it down or print it out.

You’ll also receive an email with the same information and a link back to that web page. If you want to check out your history of participation or have the email resent, go to the “Volunteer” button on our homepage.

Please cancel if you can’t make it!

If your schedule changes, please cancel so someone else can take your spot. The email you receive will include a link where you can cancel. Your courtesy will also help us schedule the right number of volunteers for the available produce.

When you arrive …

When you arrive, NH Gleans volunteers will show you where to park and help you check in. We’ll provide a brief orientation with helpful tips and information about the property.

Every adult who attends a glean must be a registered volunteer and must have signed up online for that glean. Children do not need to register or sign up, but must be supervised by an adult who is on the roster. Please note that not all gleans allow children. We will post specific information when gleans are child-friendly.

That is all the basic information! Please keep reading to find answers to questions that volunteers often have about NH Gleans.

We depend on you!

At many gleans we depend on help from volunteers who are willing to volunteer a half hour of their time. If you are available to help direct traffic or assist with intake, check off the volunteer box when you sign up for a glean. If your help is needed, the glean leader may email you beforehand or assign you a task when you arrive.

Who runs NH Gleans?

NH Gleans is a network of organizations working to increase the availability of fresh and local produce that is distributed to and through New Hampshire food pantries, soup kitchens, community suppers and schools. Our mission is to connect people with food that would otherwise go to waste, reduce hunger throughout the area, and build a sense of community. The leadership team volunteers many hours of their own time to make gleans happen.

As a non-profit organization we are entirely dependent on donations to support our efforts. If you share our mission and would like to help, click the “Donate” button on our Home page

What should I do if my contact information changes?

If you are changing contact information like your email address or phone number, go to the Volunteer page and click on 'Update.If you need to make a name change, write to Dick Yates at nhgleans@gleanweb.org.

Why won’t the signup page let me on the roster?

You may have typed your name differently than you did when you initially registered. You also need to check off the Release and Waiver of Liability. If you are still unable to access the roster, contact Dick at nhgleans@gleanweb.org or (503) 991-5525.

I forgot to write down the glean address!

The email you receive after you sign up includes a link to information about the glean, including the address. If you have signed up for the glean but have lost this email, go to the NH Gleans website and click on the “Volunteer” button. Click the button there to get another email. If you have any trouble, contact Dick.

How are gleans planned?

Glean leaders meet with crop owners to scout the property and discuss glean logistics. The size of the roster is determined by the amount of produce, the number of available volunteer staff, and parking space. Our goal is to accommodate as any people as possible.

We are indebted to property owners and commercial growers who share our mission. Commercial growers are able to donate for a variety of reasons. Sometimes produce is left over because it wasn’t sold or wasn’t ripe at the time of glean. Some crops are unsuitable for machine gleans, and other crops are too small to fulfill a cannery contract. These factors mean that we don’t know which large-scale crops will be available each season, and often have only a few days’ notice to plan gleans.

Can I bring my kids?

We encourage parents to bring their children, but please be aware that some gleans will be more suitable for kids than others. No one under the age of 13 may climb a ladder, and climbing trees is never allowed. If the lowest fruit is not accessible from the ground, there are few opportunities for younger children to help. We always provide as much information as possible about the height of the tree and the lowest fruit, so that you can make the decision about whether or not to bring your kids. Youth under age 18 don’t need to register as volunteers, but parents are required to check off the waiver form, agreeing to provide supervision.

Volunteers under age 18 must be actively supervised by an adult who is on the glean roster.

We believe that picking with NH Gleans is a valuable educational experience and a fabulous opportunity for young folks to give back to the community. When we announce new gleans, we will call special attention to those that are appropriate for children.

What should I bring to the glean?

What should I wear?

We suggest sunblock, a long-sleeved T-shirt, long pants, comfortable closed-toe shoes and a hat (trees and fields are often dusty).

Has the produce been sprayed with chemicals?

Our gleans take place at a wide variety of properties, from 10-acre orchards to urban backyards. We always ask the property owner whether or not their fruit has been sprayed with non-organic chemicals, and we include that information when we schedule the glean.

Do I have to stay for the entire time?

Since space is limited at many of the glean sites, we ask that you register to glean only when you can arrive on time and stay for the whole time until the crop is picked. Most gleans are scheduled for about two hours.

Why do gleans fill so quickly?

Many people have registered with NH Gleans. When a glean is posted, we believe it is most fair to notify all volunteers at the same time. Unfortunately, at this time there is no practical way to rotate signup opportunities. Those who take on greater leadership roles have a better chance of hearing about smaller, last-minute gleans.

Why aren’t there more gleans?

NH Gleans relies on donations from crop owners. While we do want crop owners to be aware of our service, we do not contact specific farmers to ask them to participate. After a crop is donated, our leadership team considers how many gleans will be needed to glean the produce. We also consider our ability to staff the glean, provide parking space and accommodate requests from the crop owner.

Who should I contact if I have other questions?

Please check out the Contacts page. We are always happy to help.