Are you a food-lover and a do-gooder? Food banks nationwide are looking for people like you to help hungry families get the healthy and delicious meals they need. Read on to learn how you can share your passion for food and volunteer in your community.
Do you get a kick out of cooking?
If you love making meals at home, consider volunteering in the kitchen at a food bank. Many Feeding America network food banks have large, professional kitchens where they make nutritious meals for people in their community. Volunteers help by cooking, portioning and plating meals that reach homebound seniors, children in afterschool programs and more. This volunteer opportunity is perfect for people who can’t wait to meal prep.
Food Bank for Larimer County prepares fresh, scratch-cooked meals every day in their Nutritious Kitchen in Loveland, Colorado. Last year, they made more than 170,000 meals and snacks for families in need thanks to volunteers like you.
Do you have a green thumb?
If digging in the dirt fills your heart with happiness, sign up to help on a food bank farm. Over 20 food banks nationwide operate farms or orchards where they grow food to help alleviate hunger. Volunteers plant seedlings, harvest produce and more to bring farm-fresh fruit and veggies to the tables of hungry families.
The Giving Fields, Freestore Food Bank’s community farm, grows produce like strawberries and peppers and delivers it to food pantries in Northern Kentucky on the same day it is harvested, still warm from the sun. With support from volunteers, they provide enough produce for 117,000 meals each season.
Are you a health nut?
If you have a knack for encouraging people to eat their veggies, think about becoming a nutrition educator. Most of the food banks in the Feeding America network provide nutrition education, and many of them use volunteers to provide guidance on healthy eating.
San Francisco-Marin Food Bank trains volunteers to teach basic nutrition and cooking classes in both San Francisco and Marin counties. During these classes, people who receive groceries from the food bank learn how to prepare healthy meals using food from the food bank. They also receive advice on how to be savvy about salt and sugar consumption and shop on a budget.
From chopping vegetables to picking peaches to fostering healthy habits, there are many ways for food lovers to lend their time and talent to food banks. Commit to giving back in your community in 2019 by pledging to volunteer at your local food bank.
Photo provided courtesy of San Francisco-Marin Food Bank.