Becoming a soup kitchen volunteer is both easy and rewarding. While many soup kitchens are known for events during the holidays, they do operate all year and help is always needed. Volunteering provides a simple way to give back to your community and LIVE UNITED. The gratitude on the face of just one hungry child or adult shows how much your help is appreciated.
Soup kitchens provide wholesome food for many members of a community. The homeless, hungry, or disaster victims all benefit from the services offered.
Volunteer as Much or as Little as You Can
A soup kitchen volunteer will normally work a four- to five-hour shift. The days and hours will depend on the organization running the service. You can volunteer the amount of time that is comfortable for you and your schedule. If you can only make a commitment for one or two days a year, your help is still valuable.
Find the Opportunity That Best Fits Your Abilities
You do not need to have any cooking abilities to become a soup kitchen volunteer. Preparing food, serving food, and cleaning up are some of the opportunities available. If the soup kitchen has a food pantry, you may be able to help take inventory or collect donations. Anything you can do will make a difference. In 2011, more than 5 percent of U.S. households received assistance from a food bank one or more times.
Many of the available opportunities do not require any training. When training is needed, someone will be glad to work with you. United Way of San Diego County has a volunteer opportunities that your entire family or group can become involved in. When you can work together as a family or group, you may find even greater rewards from the time spent together.
There are many ways to find volunteer opportunities. Some schools and retirement homes run soup kitchens at different times of year. Also check with local community centers, churches, homeless shelters, and food banks.