COVID-19 Volunteer Guidelines

Please know that during this challenging time we are doing everything possible to ensure your safety when you volunteer by:

  • If you have been in contact with someone who has COVID-19 prior to 2 weeks of your volunteer event, you will not be allowed to volunteer.
  • All volunteers will be given a no-touch temp check upon arrival. Volunteers with a temperature of 100.4 or above (the recommended threshold from the CDC) will be asked to leave and reschedule their shift. Volunteers will be ask appropriate COVID-19 questions upon volunteer entry.
  • Entry into the main door of the Mayerson Distribution Center, will be one (1) volunteer at a time. Follow the duck feet on the sidewalk. (Special considerations for minors, ages 8 and up with their parent/guardian on family volunteer events.) Use Hand Sanitizer upon arrival.
  • Entry into the Liberty Street Market through the main entrance and up the ramp to the volunteer check in desk located on your right at the top of the ramp.
  • Providing several hand-washing stations – Please wash your hands upon arrival. Hand washing should last at least 20 seconds under warm water.
  • Deep cleaning – Freestore Foodbank staff are continuously doing deep cleanings at all of our volunteer locations.
  • Eliminating Handshakes and hugs – Sorry. Elbow bumps are welcomed!
  • Social distancing: accommodations are in place to allow volunteers to perform their duties with reasonable social distancing.
  • Providing Protective Gear – We have hand sanitizer located throughout our various facilities. We also have masks andgloves available for volunteers during their shift. (If volunteer has their own mask, please bring, we will have masks/gloves as needed.) Stay Healthy – If you are feeling under the weather we ask that you cancel your registration and come back and visit us when you feel better.
  • Proper disposal of mask/gloves at the end of each shift.
  • Hand Washing before leaving Freestore Foodbank volunteer shift.

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Volunteers are a vital part of Freestore Foodbank’s strategic plan to provide meals to hungry children and families in our tristate area. Every time you volunteer, you will leave knowing that you have helped to provide Food, Connection and Hope for our neighbors in need.

In 2018, over 11,800 volunteers contributed over 88,000 hours of service to Freestore Foodbank. We need volunteers every day to pack Power Packs and Senior Boxes for the youngest and oldest in our community, sort food donations to be sent to our community partners, provide customer service at our Liberty Street Market (pantry), assist with special events throughout the year and provide talents and skills for dozens of other activities that help people when they are in crisis.

To volunteer contact volunteer@freestorefoodbank.org or call 513-482-7550.

Volunteers are a vital part of the Freestore Foodbank’s strategic plan to provide 50 million meals by the year 2020. Every time you volunteer, you will leave knowing that you have helped to provide Food, Connection and Hope for our neighbors in need.

In 2018, over 11,800 volunteers contributed over 88,000 hours of service to the Freestore. We need volunteers every day to pack Power Packs and Senior Boxes for the youngest and oldest in our community, sort food donations to be sent to our Community partners, provide customer service at our Liberty Street Market (pantry), assist with special events throughout the year and provide talents and skills for dozens of other activities that help people when they are in crisis.

Only through joining our efforts with member of our community can we make a difference and work to solve hunger!

What types of volunteer opportunities does the Food Bank offer?

The Freestore welcomes both individuals and groups to work on a variety of tasks that help eliminate hunger in our area. All of our volunteer activities are one of three types:

BASIC

Basic: Basic volunteer assignments are usually one-time shifts that require little or no advanced preparation or training, but do require advanced registration. Most groups and individuals are in this category. Activities include:

  • Sorting and packaging nonperishable food that is later distributed to local food pantries, soup kitchens, and shelters our Mayerson Distribution Center
  • Stocking shelves, sorting food and providing customer service to people as they shop at the Liberty Street Market in the Customer Connection Center.
  • Assisting at Special Events throughout the year including Holiday Operations, Rubber Duck Regatta and Hunger Walk.
REGULAR

Regular: Regular volunteer assignments are usually ongoing assignments which can be daily, weekly, or monthly. These assignments usually require specialized skills and/or training and require advanced registration, an interview and a background check if working with sensitive material or direct customer assistance. Possible activities include:

  • Clerical and administrative assistants
  • Receptionist and communication desk assignments
  • Back On Track (clothing store) assistants
  • Healthy Harvest Mobile Market assistants
  • Cincinnati Cooks! assistants
  • Nutrition Program Presenters
PROFESSIONAL LEADERSHIP

Professional Leadership: These volunteer assignments require experience and an on-going commitment to the Freestore Foodbanks mission, typically regular shift assignments, training and a long term commitment. Possible activities include:

  • Special Projects
  • Board and Committee appointments
VOLUNTEER QUESTIONS

Volunteer Phone Number: 513 482-7550
Volunteer Email Address:
volunteer@freestorefoodbank.org
Volunteer Mailing Address: Volunteer Management Department, Freestore Foodbank, 112 East Liberty Street, Cincinnati, OH 45202

Interested in volunteering with us? Here are some of the most commonly asked questions about volunteering at the Freestore Foodbank.

Do I need to register and schedule a time to be a volunteer?

All volunteers, including adult chaperones, are required to register online before their visit to the Freestore Foodbank. After volunteers have created an on-line account they are able to select volunteer shifts and request reservations for group volunteer opportunities. To create your volunteer account, please click here. To schedule a group volunteer opportunity, please click here. If you have questions, contact volunteer@freestorefoodbank.org or call us at 513-482-7550.

What types of volunteer opportunities does the Food Bank offer?

The Freestore welcomes both individuals and groups to work on a variety of tasks that help eliminate hunger in our area. All of our volunteer activities are one of three types:

Basic: Basic volunteer assignments are usually one-time shifts that require little or no advanced preparation or training, but do require advanced registration. Most groups and individuals are in this category. Activities include:

  • Sorting and packaging nonperishable food that is later distributed to local food pantries, soup kitchens, and shelters our Mayerson Distribution Center
  • Stocking shelves, sorting food and providing customer service to people as they shop at the Liberty Street Market in the Customer Connection Center.
  • Assisting at Special Events throughout the year including Holiday Operations, Rubber Duck Regatta, Hunger Walk and Hogs vs. Hunger.

Regular: Regular volunteer assignments are usually ongoing assignments which can be daily, weekly, or monthly. These assignments usually require specialized skills and/or training and require advanced registration, an interview and a background check if working with sensitive material or direct customer assistance. Possible activities include:

  • Clerical and administrative assistants
  • Receptionist and communication desk assignments
  • Back On Track (clothing store) assistants
  • Healthy Harvest Mobile Market assistants
  • Cincinnati Cooks! assistants
  • Nutrition Program Presenters

Professional Leadership: These volunteer assignments require experience and an on-going commitment to the Freestore Foodbanks mission, typically regular shift assignments, training and a long term commitment. Possible activities include:

  • Special Projects
  • Board and Committee appointments
Is there an age requirement to volunteer at the Freestore Food Bank?

Age requirements vary depending on the activities.

Mayerson Distribution Center – All volunteers must be at least 13 years of age.
Customer Connection Center – All volunteers must be at least 16 years of age.
Special Events – Ages vary depending on tasks

All volunteers under the age of 16 must be accompanied by an adult. Youth volunteers and adult chaperones are both required to complete the on-line registration in order to volunteer. The online system will prompt all minors to print and acquire a parental signature on a consent form before volunteering.

What are the hours of the activities?

Hours and shifts vary per event. See each activity for more information.

Can I volunteer at the Freestore Foodbank on the weekend?

Yes! We have volunteer opportunities at the Mayerson Distribution Center.

Can I bring a group of volunteers to the Freestore?

Freestore Foodbank welcomes groups from corporate and civic organizations and school daily.

We are able to accommodate groups of varying sizes depending on the event:

  • Mayerson Distribution Center: Up to 35 volunteers per shift
  • Liberty Street Market: Up to 10 volunteers per shift
  • Special Events: varies per event

To schedule as a group, please submit a request here.

Is there a dress code for volunteers?

Volunteers are required to wear closed-toed shoes with closed-heels (volunteers wearing flip-flops or clogs will not be allowed to participate in any volunteer activities). Comfortable shoes and comfortable work clothes are recommended.

Warmer Months: Shorts and short sleeve shirts are permitted at the warehouse, farm and in the Food Pantry. We ask that all shirts have sleeves and may not contain any inappropriate language or messaging.

Colder Months: Jeans and pants are recommended for the warehouse and Food Pantry.

Can I complete mandated Community Service hours for social service agencies or court by volunteering at the Freestore Foodbank?

The Freestore Foodbank is a great place to complete community service hours for social services agencies or court. Liberty Street Market volunteer opportunities have been designed just for you.

If you need community service hours to fulfill a requirement for a social service agency (JF