Pledge to Volunteer This Thanksgiving.

Thanksgiving is a perfect time to volunteer at your local soup kitchen, food pantry or food bank. Whether it’s assembling Thanksgiving meal boxes or serving food at a Thanksgiving dinner, there are a lot of opportunities to make the holiday special for families in need. Start planning your Thanksgiving volunteering today!

Commit to volunteering at a food bank near you this Thanksgiving.

How to volunteer at a food bank for Thanksgiving:


There’s nothing like Thanksgiving to bring people together and remind us all we can be thankful for in our lives. The best way to get into the spirit is by volunteering in your own community. Not only are you helping your neighbors in need, but you’re also giving back to yourself.

Here are some of the ways you can give back during Thanksgiving at your local food bank or food pantry:

  • Sort and pack food donated for Thanksgiving meals
  • Assist families during their visit to the food bank or food pantry
  • Deliver meals to the elderly or people with disabilities or health conditions
  • Cook and serve dinner at a soup kitchen or community meal

Food banks always keep safety of volunteers top of mind. During the coronavirus pandemic, volunteers are asked to follow additional safety measures like maintaining social distance, wearing appropriate face coverings, washing their hands frequently, and staying home if they or a family member aren't feeling well. Be sure to check with your local food banks for any additional safety information.

Read our tips for having the best volunteer experience this Thanksgiving.

Helping families in need this Thanksgiving

"We probably wouldn't be doing Thanksgiving if it weren't for this. This means we get to have a nice meal as a family, which we wouldn't be able to afford otherwise." - Crystal from Gary, Indiana

Crystal is just one of the millions of hardworking people who turned to Feeding America and our network of 200 food banks for help during the holidays. After Crystal lost her job as a waitress, she wasn't sure if her 10-month old daughter Ella would have the first Thanksgiving. But thanks to the Food Bank of Northwest Indiana and their dedicated volunteers, her family had all the food they needed for a traditional celebration.

Listen to more stories about the people who have fallen on hard times and need some help from their local food banks.

Crystal and her ten month old daughter Eva