Volunteers are critical to every aspect of our operation, providing over 2,000 hours of collective time every month. Our volunteers have been rated #1 for the last 40 years (by us) for their determination, compassion, availability, and overall skill. Thank you for your interest in joining our mission to end local hunger!
A variety of volunteer shifts are available, during weekday, evening, and weekend hours. We offer shifts that run the gamut, including data entry, repacking, serving Pantry guests, and unloading delivery trucks. We hope to provide a volunteer opportunity for everyone, at every ability level.
If you have any questions about volunteering or the volunteer sign-up process, please contact Monnette Bariel, Volunteer Coordinator.
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How can I volunteer at Oak Park River Forest Food Pantry?
See upcoming volunteer orientation sessions.
How do I sign up to volunteer?
All scheduling is done via an online process and/or email.
Once a Volunteer Form is submitted and Orientation is completed, volunteers are considered active and can sign up for shifts through the volunteer portal. See the video below for more information on how to sign up to volunteer once you’re active.
Do I have to schedule in advance or can I just show up to volunteer?
All volunteer shifts are scheduled in advance. Although the Food Pantry appreciates all who want to volunteer, we are not set up to accommodate volunteers who just show up to volunteer.
What type of volunteer opportunities are at the Food Pantry?
The Food Pantry offers a variety of volunteer opportunities:
- o assisting clients to shop for food
- o data entry
- o unloading food deliveries
- o stocking shelves
- o re-packing produce
- o Transporting donated food from local donors
Is there an age requirement to volunteer?
There are different volunteer opportunities for all ages. As a general rule, the age requirements are as follows:
- Client Facing Shifts: should be in middle school or above
- Non-Client Facing Shifts: varies by shift, but if younger than middle school, check with Monnette Bariel, Volunteer Coordinator.
Is there a place to lock up my personal belongings?
No. Please leave all valuables at home or locked in your vehicle. There are places to hang jackets, etc.
What should I wear?
Volunteers should wear weather appropriate clothing and closed-toed shoes.
Where is Oak Park River Forest Food Pantry located?
848 Lake St, Oak Park, IL 60301. The Food Pantry is located in the lower level of First United Church; on the NE corner of Lake and Kenilworth. Enter via the parking lot on Kenilworth.
Is parking available?
Yes. Limited parking is available in the First United Church parking lot. The parking lot tends to fill up quickly, especially during distributions. If you are able, we encourage you to park on the street. Please leave spaces for our vulnerable clients. Thank you!
Who can I contact if I have additional questions?
Questions regarding volunteering can be directed to Monnette Bariel, Volunteer Coordinator.
I want to volunteer with a large group, is that possible?
Yes, please contact Ricardo Garcia for details on scheduling.
Can I fulfill community service hours at the Food Pantry?
Yes, every volunteer is able to track hours and schedule shifts through the volunteer portal. During your volunteer orientation you will learn how to do this. If you need a letter verifying your volunteer hours on Food Pantry letterhead, please contact Ricardo Garcia.