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Bags of Taste

Bags of Taste logo

Bags of Taste is an award-winning, research-driven non-profit working with and changing the everyday diets of people in or at risk of food poverty.

Cooking Mentor at award-winning food education programme 2021/22

This opportunity takes place between 25 Oct 2021 and 31 Aug 2022

Interested in cooking, helping others cook healthy food on a budget, and connecting with people? Want to make a difference? Can you spare 2 hours a week for 2 to 3 weeks to help someone? Here's an opportunity to work with a leading food poverty organisation to change the lives of participants and even improve your own kitchen skills! **New courses starting all year around, sign up when it's convenient for you** We need volunteer cook mentors to guide participants through a short virtual course which includes essential cooking skills, making recipes and learning meal planning tips using the trademark ingredients bags that we deliver to their homes. Over the 2-3 week virtual course, volunteer cook mentors are responsible for keeping in contact with a small group of studentsĀ in a friendly chat, providing practical and moral support, cooking guidance, motivation, feedback and encouragement, and managing peer to peer interaction. All of this is really essential to them being able to complete the course and learn valuable life-changing skills - your role is incredibly important! The role is remote and flexible, you can do it from home and fit it around your studies. Could this be you? Please register your interest!

Bags of Taste is an award-winning food education programme working with people in food poverty to improve their diets, finances and physical and mental wellbeing by cooking tasty, healthy, take-away beating meals from scratch for just £1 a head. 

Our free cooking and food budgeting classes are virtual. Instead of face-to-face teaching, we deliver our courses virtually via WhatsApp, Facebook, email, and phone. We provide participants with free ingredients to help them complete the course.

We also need volunteers to deliver essential ingredient bags to participants - if you have a car or other mode of transport good for delivering shopping, this is a really great way you can help out. This will involve collecting between 1-3 bags from our pick-up location and transporting them to the participants' homes. If this sounds like something you'd enjoy, please register your interest!

*After you have clicked ‘Register Your Interest’, you will receive an email with the next steps of your volunteering application for this role - follow this guidance*

What skills do I need?

An interest in cooking is advantageous - you don't need to be a Master Chef - just able to follow simple recipes. Having good communication skills and an outgoing, open-minded personality, and a willingness to chat is essential, as is sensitivity towards people living with hardship (potentially including physical and mild learning difficulties). Fluency in English is essential to the mentoring role. However, if your English is not fluent, you can still help out with delivering essential ingredient bags to participants.

What will I gain?

You will be an essential part of an award-winning project tackling food poverty, health inequality and social isolation and a supportive and encouraging voice in someone's life, helping them to make a meaningful change. It is an opportunity to make some new friends either with other volunteers or participants on the course. You can also join our wonderful Facebook community, where you will have access to all the Bags of Taste recipes from around the world - all of which are tasty, nutritious, simple to make and can be cooked on a small budget!

Training and support

You will be given all the training and support you will need. We will provide you with all the necessary material and resources before you start mentoring with us. All the mentors can join our volunteer Facebook group and volunteer WhatsApp group to share thoughts, ideas and questions. On the amazing Facebook group, you can watch our course tutors doing live cooking demonstrations and have access to all of our delicious recipes. The programme lead (Sara) will support you throughout should you have any uncertainties, questions or difficulties at all.

Time commitment

Volunteer mentors will need to commit to mentoring their students through a complete course; this takes two weeks and around 1 hour of your time each week. After the student(s) have completed the course, you can choose to start again straight away, take a break or stop completely.







DBS (criminal records) check



Online. The courses are provided remotely via WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, phone or email.
  • CausesFoodbanks and food poverty, Poverty and social justice, Social isolation
  • FrequencyEvery week
  • WhenMonday morning, Monday afternoon, Monday evening, Tuesday morning, Tuesday afternoon, Tuesday evening, Wednesday morning, Wednesday afternoon, Wednesday evening, Thursday morning, Thursday afternoon, Thursday evening, Friday morning, Friday afternoon, Friday evening, Saturday morning, Saturday afternoon, Saturday evening, Sunday morning, Sunday afternoon, Sunday evening
  • Skills and InterestsBefriending, Communication skills, Driving, Mentoring
  • Careers and AspirationsSocial work, Teaching, Third sector and charity work

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