Volunteer

Volunteers play a critical role in the fight against hunger where we live.

Food Gatherers maintains a working warehouse, processing an average of nine tons of food each day, and a busy Community Kitchen, cooking and serving hot meals seven days a week. Volunteers are vital to our success in distributing more than 9 million pounds of food — the equivalent of 7.5 million meals each year. We hope you will join us to make a difference and have fun!

Want to learn more? Sign up for our monthly Volunteer Bulletin to receive alerts, updates, and stories from our volunteer program.

General Information and Requirements:

You can volunteer as often as you would like! We love to host individuals, as well as groups of many sizes. All training and orientation is done on site, and all materials are provided. No previous experience is required! 

  • Individual shifts: Each volunteer must create a user account by clicking on the Individual Registration button. After you create your user account, you may begin signing up for volunteer opportunities. Volunteers must register for shifts in advance; no walk-ins accepted.
  • Group shifts: Groups of four or more volunteers must fill out the Group Registration form.
  • Age requirements at the warehouse: 8+ with an adult or 14+ alone.
  • Age requirements at the Community Kitchen: 12+ with an adult or 14+ alone.
  • If you are tracking hours for school or court, or will have a coach or observer with you during your shift, please contact the Volunteer Coordinator at 734-761-2796 prior to registering.
  • We often snap photos of our volunteers & visitors at our sites. Please know that by visiting our facilities, you consent to Food Gatherers photographing and using your image and likeness.

COVID-19 Updates:

The Community Kitchen and Warehouse are open for a limited number of volunteers. Please sign-up using the Individual Registration form to see a list of available shifts.

All volunteers will be asked these questions before the start of their shift. If you answer “yes” to any of the following, we will not be able to host you as a volunteer at this time.

  1. In the last 48 hours, have you had symptoms of sore throat, diarrhea, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, loss of taste or smell, nausea or vomiting, congestion or runny nose, fever, cough, or shortness of breath?
  2. In the past 14 days, have you tested positive for COVID-19, or been in contact with anyone suspected or confirmed to have COVID-19?
  3. Are you currently under evaluation for COVID-19?

If you answered “no” to these questions, you may sign up for shifts by clicking on the Individual Registration button.

Volunteer Opportunities

Warehouse Volunteer

Three volunteers in blue shirts sort through produce with hairnets on

Work at our warehouse sorting produce and canned goods, repackaging bulk foods, and keeping the warehouse clean and food-safe. We never know what type of foods we will be rescuing, so the job is different every time! Warehouse work requires moderate lifting and comfort learning the different tasks required to keep our food moving safely and efficiently. 

Perfect for individuals, as well as small or large groups.

Food Run Volunteer

One volunteer puts a box of vegetables into another volunteer who is loading the Food Gatherers truck

Ride along in our truck helping staff pick up and deliver food. Food Run Volunteers are responsible for handling food safely and representing Food Gatherers to our food donors and agency partners. The role requires moderate lifting (up to 50 lbs) and the ability to climb in and out of the truck multiple times. It is not the easiest job, but it is a favorite! 

Perfect for individuals. Food Run Volunteers must be 18+.

Community Kitchen

Volunteers in white aprons smile while working in Food Gatherers community kitchen

Helping out at the Food Gatherers Community Kitchen is a rewarding activity. The Kitchen, located in the Robert J. Delonis Center in downtown Ann Arbor, provides meals to shelter residents and anyone in need. Volunteers at the Community Kitchen prepare and serve meals, set up for and clean up from service, and prepare bulk meals for distribution to our partner agencies. 

Perfect for individuals or small groups of 5 or fewer.

Just for Kids

A child smiles while helping volunteer for Food Gatherers

Some kids in our community don’t have enough to eat every day – but YOU can help! We love to involve young adults and kids in the fight against hunger and there are lots of off-site activities that can be done at school or home!

Perfect for kids and families who want self-guided activities that help fight hunger in their communities.