Community Chef Volunteering Award (3, 6, 12 or 18 months)
There are many ways you can use your cooking skills and enthusiasm in a voluntary capacity to benefit your local community. The Organic Cookery School’s Community Chef Volunteering Award provides structured support and resources to help you meet the volunteering section of your D of E Award.
We are enormously proud to be Approved Activity Providers for the DofE (both Volunteering and Skills), and support hundreds of participants across the UK every year.
And, as a not for profit organisation, all profits from our chargeable activities go towards our free community based cookery courses for teenagers and families on low incomes.
How does the Community Chef Award work?
Sign up for your Home-based Community Chef award (3-6 months – £99, 12-18 months – £149)
Complete our online Food Safety and Hygiene training. This will give you the knowledge and confidence to prepare meals and/or baked goods with the same hygiene standards as a café or restaurant (this is great for your CV too!).
An accredited Food Safety and Hygiene Certificate is included in the cost of your volunteering programme (and is normally valid for 3 years).
Let people know:
Following this, you need to find local people or organisations who can benefit from your time and cooking skills over the coming months. We will help you with ideas on how to let people know what you can offer over the coming months, and provide some useful templates for offering your services, checking food allergies and intolerances, and for getting feedback.
Then it’s time to get cooking!
• Volunteer to cook and share a meal or baked goods with people in your community who would benefit, e.g. a neighbour or family friend who has been in hospital, had a baby or injury; an older person, a family accessing Food Bank support.
• Offer your time to local Food Banks/Food Waste programmes – we can offer a template letter to introduce yourself and explain what you can contribute.
• If you love baking, and are also interested in fundraising, you could donate your baked goods to local charity bake sales, get involved in national campaigns (e.g. the Macmillan coffee morning), or even organise your own bake sale to support a local good cause of your choice. We will help with a diary of monthly national events, a guide to setting up and running a successful bake sale, and a some of our most popular bake sale recipes to get you started.
Keep a record of your volunteering progress through photos, feedback and self-evaluation using the provided Community Chef Activity Log. Check in monthly with your assessor (or more often, if you wish)
Make the most of social media:
Social media can be a fantastic way to document your progress and raise awareness for any local community organisations or national campaigns you are supporting, as well as the D of E. We will provide guidance and ideas on using the internet and social media safely.
Reflect and celebrate:
At the end of your programme, we invite you to reflect on what you’ve learned and most enjoyed about being part of the Community Chef programme. Your assessor will submit your assessor report and confirm you’ve completed your volunteering section with The Organic Cookery School with the D of E and the licensed organisation overseeing your award (e.g. school, college, the Scouts).
Any questions? Please email [email protected]