|Family/Group Volunteer FAQs|
Thank you for your interest in volunteering at the San Antonio Food Bank. As the group coordinator/team lead you are responsible for communicating pertinent information to your volunteers.
1. What are your volunteer hours?
As you are determining which time frame works best for your group please let the Volunteer Coordinator know if you cannot arrive on time or if you need to leave before the end of the session. Currently the San Antonio Food Bank offers two (3) hour volunteer sessions. Monday through Saturday with select sessions beginning at 9:00 AM and ending at 12:00 PM and an afternoon session beginning at 1:00 PM and ending at 4:00 PM. Monday through Sunday three shifts available at the Haven for Hope kitchen. Some opportunities are not available everyday.
2. What are your age requirements?
For safety purposes the minimum age for volunteering is 8 years of age (18 years of age for Mobile Pantry opportunities). Volunteers under the age of 16 must be accompanied by an adult when volunteering.
3. When bringing groups of youth, do you have requirements for chaperones?
Yes, the group will provide adult supervision Due to safety concerns, children 8-15 may volunteer only with adult supervision. For youth groups (12-15 years old), one adult is required for every six youths. Please be sure accompanying adults understand they will be helping to supervise the group. For youth groups (8-11 years old), one adult for every four youths is required. This age group will only work in the sorting room for two hours depending on the project available. The additional time can be arranged for a tour.
4. If I need to cancel or the number of volunteers changes do I need to call the San Antonio Food Bank?
Yes, it is important that you let the Volunteer Coordinator know if you cannot attend, if you increase the number of volunteers or if your number of volunteers is less than your original estimate. The San Antonio Food Bank uses a volunteer work force daily and schedules according to its needs. If you cannot make the session please call in enough time so the Volunteer Coordinator can schedule other volunteers. In addition if your number of volunteers increases or decreases it is can affect the volunteer session.
5. Do I need to make an appointment for my group or can we walk-in?
Except when otherwise indicated, all volunteering is by appointment only and requires pre-screening. Prescreening can be done via phone or email and is required to determine each volunteers need and the food banks ability to meet those needs.
6. What should my group wear?
You should communicate to all volunteers that for safety reasons all volunteers are required to wear close-toed shoes and clothes appropriate to work in a warehouse, kitchen or garden setting. No sandals/flip-flops, extremely short skirts/shorts or low-cut shirts. Individuals wearing opened toed shoes will not be allowed in warehouse/kitchen areas. When volunteering for the garden, gloves and long pants are recommended.
7. What will we be doing?
The San Antonio Food Bank attempts to place volunteers in the areas that best fit their talents and desires. Volunteers will be placed in the area of greatest need. Physical or mental limitations should be discussed prior to scheduling a volunteer session. We want our volunteers to be successful, instructions will be provided before each session.
8. Where do we park?
Any available parking slots around the building. Unless otherwise indicated parking is NOT allowed in fenced areas and in front of loading docks or entrances. Carpooling is always recommended.
9. What if there are court-ordered volunteers in my group?
Does the San Antonio Food Bank accept court-ordered volunteers? Yes, as with all volunteers pre-screening is required. The food bank reserves the right to deny volunteer services based on certain offenses. Please bring this to the attention of the Volunteer Coordinator at the time you are scheduling the volunteer session.
10. When we get there where do we report?
All volunteers are asked to report to the Volunteer Entrance, it is the entrance under the stairs. (When facing the front entrance, it will be to your left). The door remains locked at all times, but the Volunteer Coordinator or designated individual will be available to let volunteers in. On weekends volunteers will be welcomed in 15 minutes prior to the session.
11. Do we need to sign in?
Yes, each volunteer group needs to sign in each time they volunteer at the San Antonio Food Bank. Sign-in sheets and pens are available at the counter.
12. Does the San Antonio Food Bank provide proof of volunteer service for volunteers?
Yes, upon request the San Antonio Food Bank will provide volunteers with a dated letter/certificate and number of hours volunteered. The Volunteer Coordinator will also sign any school/church/community service forms after each session.
13. Does the San Antonio Food Bank keep track of volunteer hours?
Yes, the San Antonio Food Bank keeps accurate records of all volunteer hours. The food bank is not responsible if volunteers do not sign in and out or do not provide accurate or complete information.