Volunteer FAQ

Use the online volunteer portal to sign up for a shift. Contact volunteer@dccentralkitchen.org  for assistance.

None. Just a great attitude and willingness to work hard.

Volunteers must be 12 years or older.

Meal prep involves cutting vegetables, preparing salads, packaging meals, and other kitchen related tasks.

Daily Meal Prep: 30 

(Larger groups may potentially be accommodated based on need and availability. Please contact volunteer@dccentralkitchen.org for inquiries.)

Gleaning: 10-20 (Volunteer slots vary depending on farm location.)

No, we offer special assignments for vegetarians and persons with allergies.

Volunteers must be able to stand for 3 hours but will not be required to lift heavy loads. There are benches located around the Volunteer Zone if breaks are needed throughout the shift. 

Persons with back injuries are not advised to sign up for gleaning shifts as that involves working outdoors with local farm partners on various physical activities.

Safety is our number one concern. All volunteers must wear appropriate and professional attire suitable for an industrial production kitchen. Please wear closed toed shoes, sleeves and long pants. Shoes with high-grip soles are strongly recommended.

Due to health regulations, volunteers who do not follow this dress code will not be allowed to work in the Kitchen. Please remember:

  • No shorts or short skirts/dresses
  • No tights, spandex, leggings, or pajama pants
  • No tank tops or sleeveless shirts/dresses
  • No shirts with exposed midriff (front or back)
  • No open toed sandals or shoes
  • No clothing with printed crude or offensive words or images
  • No loose jewelry such as watches, bracelets, dangling earrings, and rings
  • No high heels

Lockers are available for use during indoor volunteer shifts should any clothing or other items need to be stored throughout your shift.

We rely heavily on the hard work of volunteers in order to effectively serve our community. If you schedule a volunteer shift and DO NOT show up, DC Central Kitchen cannot serve the community to the best of our ability.

All registered volunteers, including groups, must confirm their shift one week prior to the scheduled volunteer date. Registered volunteers will receive an email one week before their shift with confirmation instructions.

Unconfirmed shifts will be cancelled 3 days prior to the scheduled shift in order to ensure DC Central Kitchen has enough volunteers to support our meal production.

While lunch is not provided, we do have an on site cafe with items available for purchase located in the Main Lobby of our facility. Volunteers are asked not to bring any food related items to your registered shift. 

There is no food provided at any gleaning shift so feel free to bring water and snacks if needed. Keep in mind the gleaning shifts do not usually have lockers or secure space available for personal items

There is a Colonial Parking garage on the 2nd St side of the building, as well as metered street parking (be sure to check game day schedules, as parking in the neighborhood is restricted during home games at Nationals Park & Audi Field). The closest Metro stop is the Waterfront Station (green line).

Yes, all volunteers will be required to electronically sign the Volunteer Release and Waiver of Liability form along with the COVID-19 Vaccine Attestation form prior to any volunteer shift. Volunteers under the age of 18 must provide a parent/guardian’s name on the waiver.