Volunteering with 18 Reasons

18 Reasons is a nonprofit community cooking school, and we depend on an active and vibrant team of volunteers passionate about food education and home cooking to carry out our mission: empowering our community with the confidence and creativity to buy, cook and eat good food every day. The purpose of our work is to create equity and belonging in our community through the transformative and healing power of home cooking.

To fulfill our mission, we offer two food education programs, each of which has different onboarding steps and roles for volunteers. These are our Cooking Matters and 18th Street Kitchen programs.

Cooking Matters is a free food education and grocery donation program for low-income families through which we provide healthy grocery donations paired with hands-on cooking and nutrition classes to more than 3,500 low-income households throughout the Bay Area each year. We teach CM classes for kids, teens, families, and adults.
Our 18th Street Kitchen in the Mission District of San Francisco offers paid cooking classes and other food programs open to everyone, and ticket sales from this program helps support Cooking Matters.

As a volunteer, you are an essential part of our organization’s success. Therefore, we strive to make your experience educational, fulfilling, and full of joy. We encourage you to have fun, to learn, and to share what you glean with others. We hope that your service will be a valuable experience that contributes to your life outside the classroom and that you know what a very big difference you make in our community as an 18 Reasons volunteer.

Interested in volunteering? Click below to learn about next steps and availability for volunteering in each of our programs.

Staying in touch as a volunteer

We send all of our active volunteers a quarterly newsletter with recipes, information about our community partnerships and community need, insider updates, and more. You can also join your fellow volunteers in our 18 Reasons Volunteers Facebook group. After your group membership is approved by staff, start posting to get to know your fellow volunteers and learn from one another. We also invite active volunteers to socials and gatherings throughout the year. Thank you for your service to our organization and community!