We are looking for volunteers!

The Strathcona Community Centre Food Programs have a variety of volunteer opportunities.

If you are interested in any of these volunteer opportunities, please contact Lauren, food security coordinator, to arrange a meeting  (lauren.brown@vancouver.ca or 604-713-1839).

*Note that there are a limited number of volunteer spaces available in each program and they do fill-up at times.  If you are interested in a program that is full, we are happy to put you on a wait list for when a space becomes available.


Strathcona is a diverse and vibrant neighbourhood composed of people from all over the world who speak a wide array of languages.  We are looking for help with verbal and written translations to make programming and resources accessible to all.  The most commonly needed languages include, but are not limited to Cantonese, Mandarin, Vietnamese and Spanish.

  • Provide oral translations for families during programs
    • Tasks include: Attending programs or meetings to translate for participants that do not feel comfortable with the English language.
    • Time: periodic or during a regular program, as needed
  •  Provide written translations for communication materials
    • Tasks include: Translating written materials for community centre programs.  Ability to type in different languages is an asset for preparing multilingual materials.
    • Time: periodic, can be completed remotely

Food Preparation

We are looking for volunteers to assist staff members in preparing healthy snacks and meals for a variety of our programs.  Food safe certificate is an asset.  As a volunteer, you will have the opportunity to attain or renew your food safe level 1.

  • Prepare healthy food for community centre programs
    • Tasks Include: Creating healthy and storable snacks with staff and volunteers to be used by our child and youth programs throughout the week.  We will also be trying to make use of produce that is left-over from the previous week.  Bring your creativity and suggestions. 
    • Time: TBD
  • Food Rescue with After School Adventures
    • Tasks Include: Reducing food waste, sharing recipes and honing skills, while providing high quality, organic snacks for the After School Adventures program and their social enterprise, “the Pirate Kitchen Snack Bar”.  It is run by a staff team from the After School Adventures Program, who work with volunteers from the UBC Trek Program, the wider community, as well as a group of men and women with developmental disabilities from the Discovery Program.  
    • Time: Thursdays Sept - June, 10:30 or 11am to 1pm 

Community Kitchens

Community kitchens are an opportunity for community members to work together, share their knowledge and skills, develop leadership and confidence and enjoy a meal.  We are looking for a volunteer assistant to help the community kitchen facilitator.

  •  Assist the facilitator to run a community kitchen
    • Tasks Include: Setting-up, cooking and interacting with participants during the community kitchen, enjoying a meal together and cleaning-up at the end.  Potential to take on some planning aspects as well.  Food safe certificate is an asset and you will have the opportunity to attain or renew your food safe level 1.
    • Time: Varies

Backpack Program

The Backpack Program provides the opportunity for families with children that are experiencing food insecurity to select healthy weekend snacks within a fun market environment.  Please see the specific volunteer roles below.  Regular volunteer commitment is required for this program.

  • Receiving and sorting the food delivery
    • Tasks Include: Preparing the room to receive the deliveries, helping to unload the pallets, assisting the Backpack Coordinator to inventory the food, checking due dates and organizing items, breaking down large items into smaller servings.
    • Time: Thursdays Sept - June, 1:00 to 3:00pm
  • Packing baskets for children that attend afterschool care
    • Tasks Include: Packing baskets for families that have children in afterschool care and cannot attend during the Backpack Market’s pick-up hours.  You will help to ensure that all of the baskets are present, pack them with produce and non-perishables, partition yogurt and help with other program tasks as needed.
    • Time: Thursdays Sept - June, 5:00 to 6:30pm
  • Setting-up, facilitating and cleaning-up the ‘Market’
    • Tasks Include: Creating a welcoming ‘market’ environment for program participants, delivering packed baskets to childcare programs, organizing produce and other staples on tables, creating signs for clarity, welcoming participants, answering questions, refreshing food as it is selected, ensuring participants receive correct amounts of food.
    • Time: Fridays  Sept – June, 12 – 2pm for set-up and 1:45 to 4:45 for Market and clean-up (regular commitment is required
    • **Cantonese, Mandarin, Vietnamese and Spanish language skills are an asset for this position, but not required

Not So Fast Recipe Box

The Not So Fast Food For All Society encourages communities to consume less and give more.  The money that people save from fasting from something in their lives goes to local food charities including the Strathcona Community Centre Food Programs.  Some of these donations go toward non-perishable ingredients that accompany a recipe for a healthy home-cooked meal. 

  • Packing bags of non-perishable ingredients
    • Tasks Include: Measuring and packing non-perishable ingredients that accompany a recipe into Ziploc bags so that others can take home an easy to prepare dinner idea.
    • Time: Flexible – can be discussed.

Sunshine Patch Garden

The Strathcona Community Centre’s Sunshine Patch Garden is a pollinator garden that is used and cared for by the Afterschool Adventures childcare program, school classes, neighbourhood projects and workshops.  Come on out to help us maintain and further develop this valuable community asset.

  • Help maintain the Sunshine Patch
    • Tasks Include: Assisting community centre staff and programs with garden tasks such as planting, mulching, weeding, pruning and watering.  This includes potential to help lead childcare groups in gardening activities.  There is also potential for this volunteer position to help reestablish an on-site composting system. 
    • Time: Flexible – can be arranged with volunteer’s schedule. 

Breakfast Program

The Breakfast Program serves breakfast to students of LordStrathconaElementary School and their families Monday to Friday.  The program focuses on providing a healthy, balanced and varied meal in a social and welcoming setting.  In addition to volunteers from the wider community, students from the elementary school volunteer as Breakfast Buddies to prepare and serve food for their classmates and neighbours while gaining skills, self-confidence and a sense of belonging.  Regular volunteer commitment is required for this program.

  • Assist the Breakfast Program Coordinator with food preparation, service and clean-up
    • Tasks Include: taking responsibility for a particular set of tasks in a team environment.  These tasks could include, but are not limited to restocking/replenishing utensils and food items; washing, sanitizing, and putting away dishes; and fruit prep and serving.  Volunteers are welcome to enjoy some coffee, tea and/or breakfast as part of their work.
    • Time: Monday through Friday 7:15 to 9:15 (generally a volunteer will choose one day per week)

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