Get involved

There are lots of ways you can help Bags of Taste achieve its mission to help people move and stay out of food poverty. Here are just a few!

Make a life-changing difference

Volunteers are key to everything we do, and have helped change thousands of participants’ lives.  Please help us make a life-changing difference to people in food poverty.

Sue, Sheffield Cooking Mentor

Volunteer as a Bags of Taste cooking mentor

At Bags of Taste, each year we deliver 1,600 Mentored Home Cooking courses across the country and we’ve had amazing feedback. Delivered by WhatsApp or phone, our interactive courses are flexible and fun.

Volunteering as a mentor on our courses, you’ll inspire and help others, which is hugely rewarding.

You can help wherever you are in the country.  You’ll need to commit between two to three hours over two weeks to support someone through a course, and you can commit for just one course at a time.

We’ll provide you with all the training and support you need!

Join our friendly, dedicated team of volunteers

Without our wonderful volunteers we wouldn’t be able to continue to make such a difference to people living in food poverty.

With significant increases in food bank usage and the economic uncertainty of the cost of living crisis and rising energy bills, our work is now needed more than ever. Today, we have 200 volunteers supporting us – but the more support we have, the more we can do together!

We need people (like you) to help us with:-

Shopping and local food delivery

Are you available to help with shopping or packing or delivery of our ingredients and equipment bags in any of our locations?

Ideally, you have a car or bike, while in some areas, it might be possible on foot.

You’ll be playing a key role in supporting our students and starting them on their cooking journey!

Outreach

Do you know your local area well and have a good network of community contacts? We’d love your support, which will help us help more people in your area.

If you are based in one of our current locations, you might enjoy working with our area head to research and contact potential referrer charities or groups. If you’re not, you can help us develop a new Bags of Taste project in your own area.

This outreach is hugely important to helping us help more people – face-to-face contacts and local knowledge are key to spreading the word about Bags of Taste!

Marketing, fundraising and administration

Do you have marketing, research, business development, admin or networking skills? We need to raise our profile and awareness of what we do to recruit new students, get new referrers and raise more money.

You can help research potential funders, contact people or make applications. We will support you and provide you with valuable experience and knowledge that will both enhance your CV and introduce you to new contacts and potential opportunities .

If research and evaluation is your thing, we occasionally have projects where you can help us carry out interviews and research that measure our impact.

We’d love to hear from you and chat about how you can help us help people overcome and stay out of food poverty.

Dani’s story

I decided to get involved during lockdown to help the Sheffield community during a difficult time where many people are isolated and in financial difficulty because of the pandemic.

Cooking is a big hobby of mine so I really enjoy getting to combine something I enjoy with teaching people from different backgrounds to cook healthy and tasty meals on a small budget.

I love the community vibe within the groups and that it gives people new-found confidence when it comes to cooking.

— Dani, volunteer

Ben’s story

Volunteering with Bags of Taste is one of the best decisions I have made and I’d encourage anyone with an interest in food or healthy eating to get involved!
It’s hugely flexible and only takes a few hours each month. It’s an extremely rewarding journey and it’s been amazing to see how someone’s eating habits, and whole life, can change in just a few weeks!

I have loved meeting so many new interesting people and am so proud to be part of an organisation that is making a difference.

— Ben, volunteer

More ways to support us

Volunteering is a great way to support Bags of Taste but there are other ways to support us, including fundraising directly and fundraising partnerships.

Work with us to tackle food poverty

With the current cost of living crisis, there has never been a greater need for our work, so this is where you come in. Your support will mean that we can continue empower and support vulnerable people in food poverty to cook healthy affordable meals for themselves and their families throughout their lives.

How to get involved

There are many of ways you can help us a partner, whether you are a company or a group of supporters. Here are just a few:-

  • Create and deliver a corporate team-building event. We can tailor this to your specific preferences and needs  – why not stage an internal cook-off challenge between departments, or even a friendly event with your competitors?
  • Fundraise for us
  • Donate – we need to raise all our own funds each year to continue our work
  • Volunteer – you can help with getting food to where it is most needed so you could support us with local on-the-ground logistics like food packaging or delivery or become a mentor on our cooking courses

How helping us helps you

Supporting Bags of Taste’s mission brings benefits to your organisation, including:-

  • Improved staff morale and engagement
  • Increased visibility of your organisation in your area and beyond
  • The opportunity to make a massive difference to your local community
  • Volunteering opportunities that can provide your teams with additional skills and networking opportunities.

Slaughter and May – Corporate Donors

Slaughter and May are a leading, international law firm based in the heart of London, which is home to both the capital’s most highly-valued companies and its most deprived communities. We’re both grateful and honoured that they’ve chosen to support us.

“We’re delighted to support Bags of Taste as part of our community programme. Our office is in Islington which is often mistaken for an affluent area but in reality, it has the 4th highest level of child poverty in the country with 47% living below the poverty line. It’s vitally important to us that we help our local community thrive and supporting people in food poverty is hugely important.”

Lucy Elliott, Community Adviser, Responsible Business, Slaughter and May

Slaughter & Ma

Fundraise

Help fund our journey to tackle food poverty directly and help us empower people to cook nutritious, affordable meals for themselves and their families and to develop the resilience to maintain healthy habits throughout their lives

Here are just a few ideas for fundraising for Bags of Taste:-

  • Hold a supper club, like our sister project Supper Club, using some of our budget meals to raise funds for us.
  • A Bakeathon (with an emphasis on health and value)
  • Organise a corporate team-building
  • Take up a new activity or sport – e.g Couch to 5k, or set your own daily running, swimming, skipping or hopping goal– reach for the skies! –, and ask your friends and social media contacts to sponsor it as a fundraiser for Bags of Taste
  • Join an organised event – or organise one yourself; a hike, swim, skydive, balloon-ride, and involve your friends and family, company or the local community
  • Ask your company to support us in lieu of Christmas cards, or to give us a donation this Christmas?
  • Give up your naughtiest treat for a week/month (choose your ‘poison’ and deadline!) and donate the money you save to Bags of Taste. This could be a swear-box!
  • Throw or participate in car-boot sale and throw out your unwanted clutter at the same time – or use an online platform like eBay or Vinted and donate the proceeds to Bags of Taste

Whether you do something big or small, you can be sure that it will make a massive difference to people in food poverty.

We’ll provide you with  fundraising materials, advice and support and loads of encouragement along the way, and promote your fundraiser across all our social media

To get your fundraising started, you can set up your online page and start raising money online today at Local Giving

Or contact us – we’d love to chat and help make your ideas happen!