Kris Pollick: Humbly helping the hungry

When her kids got older, Kris decided it was time to go back to work. A passion for volunteerism led her down an unexpected career path.

Presented by: Our York Media
Written by: Kate Penn
Kris Pollick (Photo by Caleb Robertson for Our York Media)

After being a stay-at-home mom for 11 years, Kris Pollick says she knew it was time to go back to work when she “got tired of cleaning the refrigerator.”

It’s that kind of humor that’s kept her going where she ended up — as the executive director of the Catholic Harvest Food Pantry in York.

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Kris only sees people when they’re at their lowest.

“They come to the pantry when they need help,” she says. “When they don’t need help, we don’t see them.”

Kris remembers one grandmother who was raising her grandkids. She was already struggling to make ends meet when her husband passed away. Then, she lost access to food stamps.

There was another woman who was going through a divorce, had no income, and nowhere else to turn. When Kris helped her to the parking lot with her food, she realized they had almost the same van.

We don’t get old until we stop learning things.

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Kris Pollick

Kris was able to help both families — and offer a shoulder to lean on.

“Sometimes, they just need to talk,” she says.

She’s learned to compartmentalize, storing the sadness in one part of her mind while finding humor wherever else she can.

“I have the funniest work stories of anyone I know,” she says, before jumping into a story about a McDonald’s cup that was definitely not filled with soda.

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Before she had kids, Kris had been an executive assistant, worked at a school, and worked for several retailers.

But while taking care of her kids, she’d found a passion for volunteering and went back to school.

She was 49 when she started her job with Catholic Harvest Food Pantry.

“We don’t get old until we stop learning things,” she says.

She found a new home in her work there, and her experience outside of the nonprofit world helped develop her into being capable of handling that job.

“If you do things right as a woman,” she says, “the older you get, the stronger you can be.”

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