How to volunteer at soup kitchens

Written by beth vanhoose
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How to volunteer at soup kitchens
Soup kitchens can be an important boost to those who need a helping hand. (soup ladle image by Mat Hayward from

If you are looking for a way to make a difference and help those in need, volunteering at a soup kitchen is a great way to spend your free time. Soup kitchens are also called bread lines. Most homeless shelters are soup kitchens, serving a free hot meal to those who need it.

Skill level:


  1. 1

    Browse through your local phone book to find homeless shelters near you.

  2. 2

    If you don't have a phone book, do an Internet search.

  3. 3

    Once you've located homeless shelters in your area, call each shelter to see when they serve meals to the homeless and if they need volunteers. Make a list to determine which opportunities will fit into your schedule.

  1. 1

    Contact the volunteer coordinator to arrange for your first volunteer stint.

  2. 2

    Arrive at the designated location early so that you can receive your instructions and meet the other volunteers.

  3. 3

    Man your assigned station and serve food to those who pass by.

  4. 4

    Smile! You're making a big difference in the life of someone who needs it.

Tips and warnings

  • Soup kitchens need help all year long. If serving isn't for you, see if there are other ways you can assist, such as mingling and talking with the diners.

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