Volunteers are critical to the success of any food bank. Food banks rely significantly on volunteers, even more so now that COVID-19 threatens the globe. However, this situation does not prevent food banks from extending assistance while adhering to routine everyday safety and hygiene procedures.


Volunteers are crucial in delivering the duties and responsibilities of the food bank to the people. Individuals and groups are welcome to volunteer for various volunteering opportunities, including helping with the packaging in the warehouse and providing administrative support. But most importantly, going on-site to distribute food aid.


No matter how determined you may be to volunteer, there are specific requirements you must meet to do the given duty effectively and quickly. This requirement is the age limit for volunteering.


Volunteering at the Food Bank

Before we get to the age requirements for volunteering at the food bank, let’s talk about the many volunteer opportunities available and the benefits you will receive from your participation.


Each volunteer experience is unique and tailored to meet specific needs. As a volunteer, you may do the following:

  • Organizing and packing food boxes for distribution can help keep shelves stocked. 
  • Assisting neighbors in providing food for their families through mobile pantries, drive-thru pantries, and no-contact distributions
  • Delivering meals to the most vulnerable neighbors and several communities taking refuge
  • Volunteering from home by seeking volunteers to assist with fundraising and awareness-raising efforts


Volunteers are the food bank’s lifeblood. Without the many generous people who volunteer their time each day to help our society meet the needs of its people, we wouldn’t be able to do what we do. Here are some of the benefits you will get by volunteering:

  • connects you with your community 
  • benefits your mind and body
  • helps your career development
  • adds life enjoyment and fulfillment


How Old Do You Have to Be to Volunteer?

There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, as the age at which someone can volunteer at a food bank may vary depending on the specific food bank. However, many food banks have a minimum age limit for volunteers, usually between 14 and 18 years old. Additionally, there is no maximum age limit if the adult can physically volunteer.


If you are between 14 and 17 years old, you must get written consent from a parent or guardian before reporting for your shift. If you are under 18 and do not present a signed consent letter for your first shift, you will be denied the opportunity to volunteer.


You must have parental or guardian written consent if you are between 14 and 17 years of age. You will be denied the opportunity to work your first shift if you are under 18 and do not have a signed consent form.


Volunteers must be at least 14 to volunteer in our warehouse for sorting and packing, and 18 to distribute food assistance at any distribution sites.


Indeed, age is a significant determinant for volunteering. The best way to find out if you are eligible to volunteer at a food bank is to contact the bank directly to ask about their policies.


Volunteering at a food bank can be an excellent way for you to give back to your community and a great place to learn new skills. If you’re interested in helping at a food bank, Second Harvest of the Greater Valley would gladly accept you. Contact us now to find out our policies on volunteer age.