We can’t do it without you!

The Community Dining program has two main goals: to provide healthy meals for seniors and to offer them a space for socialization. As we age, there is an increased risk of becoming isolated and for decreasing nutritious intake. This program is Senior Services’ part of the federal Congregate Meals program that helps to minimize these risks to health and wellbeing. In the program, there is opportunity to be involved directly in the preparation for the meal, which is served weekdays around lunchtime at 11 different sites in and around Seattle/King County.

There are behind-the-scenes opportunities and “front-line” positions if you prefer more customer service oriented experiences. Opportunity for interaction between volunteers and seniors who come to eat lunch is welcomed and encouraged, and varies depending on what position you’re doing.

Some positions don’t require any experience while other positions or certain locations may prefer some kitchen experience. Most simply require passion about food, serving seniors, or helping. As a volunteer, you aren’t required to do tasks you feel uncomfortable or unsafe doing, including using knives or special equipment, although training is provided as the chef feels is appropriate. You will probably be standing during your volunteer time, but you can take breaks and ask for reasonable accommodation as needed.

Positions with food service or prep require a food handler’s permit. For everyone’s safety (members, guests, employees, and volunteers), we conduct background checks on all employees and volunteers at the beginning of their service.

Some activities you may be involved in as a volunteer include:

 Kitchen food prep under direction of chef/cook

 Plating and serving meals (for sites with sit-down service)

 Plating meals on the food line (for sites with cafeteria-style service)

 Setting up, cleaning tables

 Dishwashing

 Greeting, registration, cashier

 Menu planning

 Data entry and admin-istrative paperwork

 Special projects

 Volunteer outreach

To apply as a volunteer:

Visit seniorservices.org, or click to complete a Volunteer Application

Shelly Najjar

Community Dining Volunteer Coordinator