Volunteer with Philly Food Rescue
In one hour, you can do something tangible to reduce food waste and resource local community.
Nine (9) Unclaimed Weekly Food Rescues (as of 2/22/24, subject to frequent change):
- Mariposa Food Co-op to Thompson Scholarship Foundation
- DIG UPenn to The Word of God Community Church
- DIG Rittenhouse Square to Bebashi
- The Capital Grille To Bethesda Project, My Brother's House
- DIG UPenn to Frontline Dads
- DIG Rittenhouse to Mighty Writers, North
- DIG Rittenhouse to Broad Street Ministry
- Share Food Program to PHA Abbotsford Homes
- The Rounds to Church of Pentecost
These rescues have a designated community recipient and need a ride. Volunteers sign up in-app to complete deliveries.
Turn on notifications to see additionally available one-time rescues, too, publishing daily.
What's the service opportunity?
Philly Food Rescue is the sustainability, food recovery, and donations arm of Share Food Program. You'll use your own car (or bike) to rescue surplus food from a grocery store, restaurant, caterer, farmers market, or the Share warehouse, delivering it to its matched nonprofit recipient. Those include senior centers, shelters, places of worship, schools, community fridges, clinics, affordable housing communities, and more.
What difference does food rescue make?
Philly Food Rescue increases fresh food access for our neighbors. Our team recovers more than one half-million pounds of food every month thanks to volunteers like you, who keep wholesome food within our communities and out of the waste stream. We resource 300+ partners across Greater Philadelphia, impacting nutrition security and sustainability every day of the week.
- A valid driver's license and insurance. For smaller food rescues, a bike or transit pass may do
- Food rescue volunteers should be able to lift at least 30 lbs. If that's untenable, bring a friend!
- Clear trunk and back seat to make space for boxes or bags of food
- Cell phone required to communicate with food donor, nonprofit recipient, and PFR dispatch during active rescue
Philly Food Rescue app:
To get started volunteering with PFR and sign up to complete a food rescue near you, download the Philly Food Rescue app in Google Play or the App Store, create a profile, and turn on notifications. You can claim a one-time or weekly/recurring food rescue.
- If you need help finding a rescue that fits, or if you see a weekly rescue you want to try one-time, reach out. We may be able to find or even create something near where you live or work.
The Philly Food Rescue app houses all food rescue instructions, photos, maps, contact information, and donation records. Volunteers' accurate reporting of donation kinds and quantities in-app preserves data integrity. Thanks for being our program's careful eyes, helpful hands, and sturdy boots on the ground!
What should I bring or wear?
- Closed-toe shoes are recommended in the field and required at our warehouse.
- Nearly all donations are pre-packed for transport into boxes or bags. Some Wawa food rescues require insulated cooler bags, which we can provide.
- If a donor like Whole Foods needs you to bring your own bins, bags, or boxes, we'll let you know.
- Complete your food rescue during its active window, using the Philly Food Rescue app in real time.
- Most food rescues can be completed in one (1) hour, and rescue windows are typically two (2) hours long.
- PFR matches donations within five (5) miles or a half hour's drive to ensure food safety. Volunteers drive directly from donor to recipient.
- You can bring a friend or child to help with loading, unloading, and delivery.
- Park legally, feed any meters, and avoid loading zones and disability parking to avoid parking tickets.
- Share photos from your food rescue! Tag PFR on Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook.
- Can't do your rescue anymore? Request a sub or drop it in-app so we know to send someone else in your place!
- Questions about volunteering with Philly Food Rescue? Email Britt or call/text (215) 301-3734.
- Limited small group volunteer activities may be available with Philly Food Rescue, too.
Claim volunteer opportunities directly within the Philly Food Rescue mobile app.
Thanks for helping us create better food access throughout the Philadelphia, its suburbs, and South Jersey.
Together we diverted 6.8 million pounds of good food in 2023!