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Capital Area Food Bank

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The Capital Area Food Bank leads our region’s efforts to provide good, healthy food to people struggling with hunger and food insecurity. Each year, they source and distribute the food for over 45 million meals. Together with over 450 local partners, the Capital Area Food Bank is providing the food people need to thrive today. They are also working with partners to pair food with services that can create permanent pathways out of hunger tomorrow.

How to Volunteer: 


Volunteers between the ages of 12 and 18 must be accompanied by an adult to volunteer at the food bank.


1. Please have the adult you will be volunteering with create an account in our volunteer opportunity system.


2. Register to volunteer using our Volunteer Opportunities Calendar.  The calendar will show how many volunteer slots are available for any given shift; if you do not receive a confirmation email with the date and time of the volunteer opportunity, you have not been successfully registered to volunteer. Once an adult has been registered let us know and we will reserve a spot for you under their reservation.

Before you Volunteer:

 Students between the ages of 12 and 18 will require a Youth Waiver signed by a parent or guardian. All individuals volunteering are encouraged to wear comfortable clothing and required to wear closed toe shoes; individuals wearing sandals or flip flops are not able to volunteer in the warehouse.


Youth Waiver:



Contact Information: 

Volunteer Services Team: 202-644-9822.

Student Review:

I've volunteered with Capital Area Food Bank multiple times. The activities ranged from sorting in the warehouse to distributing food at a marketplace. I loved volunteering with CAFB because I was able to directly see the impact my volunteering had on those in the community. I will never forget the feeling of handing out bags of food that would support a person or a family. This was an incredible experience. I recommend bringing your friends or family to the event so you can experience this event together.


How to Host a Food Drive


You can host your own food drive. Here are the steps to do this (advice from a student).

1. Create a flyer or a document explaining your food drive. This includes, start date, end date, food drop off locations, and the name of the food bank.

2. Contact friends, neighbors, family, and peers to collect food. During COVID-19, ensure everyone is being safe when dropping off and picking up food by wearing a mask and social distancing.

3. On a set date, drop off the food at Capital Area Food Bank! Their drop off dates and times are on their website.


What do CAFB volunteers do?


In-person volunteering activities:

- Volunteer at the food bank (sorting)

- Volunteer at the marketplace (distributing)

Virtual volunteering activities:

- Host a food drive

- Host a fundraiser

Virtual and In-Person opportunities

How to Fundraise:


There are virtual ways to give back, such as hosting or supporting a fundraiser. The Capital Area Food Bank allows volunteers to host digital food drives. Instead of collecting food, you can raise money for this important cause. 



Plan ahead! Make sure you set definite start and end dates for your drive so your donors know when to begin collecting.


Start your own food collection! ​Next time you're at the grocery store, grab a few cans for your food drive. A little goes a long way.

Know what food to collect! Learn about non perishable food and look at the Capital Area Food Bank's "Most Wanted List" for ideas.

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