Nutrition Volunteering

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Nutrition-Related Volunteer Opportunities

Second Harvest Food Bank well understands that food is medicine and nutritious meals matter. The food-insecure households served by the Food Bank can be caught in a vicious cycle connecting poverty, health, and food insecurity. Therefore, the Food Bank has developed a dynamic nutrition education program to promote healthy and safe food for those that need it most. The Nutrition Department at Second Harvest Food Bank has three main goals: 1. Ensure food distributed to clients is healthy, 2. Encourage client consumption of the healthy food that is distributed, and 3. Provide food safety education. Our volunteers are critical in helping us to achieve all of these goals!

Health Ambassador Community Nutrition Internship

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Looking for a way to use your passion for healthy eating and cooking to help people in need? Join our growing team of Health Ambassador interns who help share important nutrition knowledge and make a difference in the lives of Second Harvest Food Bank clients! Please note that this is an unpaid internship.

Description: Work with Second Harvest nutrition educators to give nutrition and food safety lessons to food assistance clients and provide recipe samples.

Training: Health Ambassadors complete a training program which includes:

  • Basic nutrition
  • Food safety including an on-line course and exam. Upon completion, ambassadors will receive a Food Handler's Permit
  • Cultural awareness training including techniques for popular education and cultural diversity

Upcoming training opportunities:
Santa Clara County: September 18, 1-4:30pm at our Curtner center (750 Curtner Ave, San Jose)
San Mateo County: September 10, 1-4pm at our Bing center (1051 Bing St, San Carlos)

Location: Various food distribution sites and community agencies throughout Santa Clara or San Mateo County.

Hours: Commit to at least 3-9 hours/month for at least 3 months — mostly between 8-5, Monday through Friday. Some weekends.


  • Able to attend 3.5-hour Health Ambassador training and a 2-hour online food safety training
  • Outgoing and enthusiastic
  • Comfortable working as part of a team with a diverse population
  • Able to commit to 3 months of volunteer work
  • Able to volunteer during working hours Monday-Friday
  • 18 years or older
  • Preferred: Able to speak Spanish, Chinese, Russian, Tagalog, or Vietnamese

If you would like to volunteer in San Mateo County, please contact Alex Navarro at If you would like to volunteer in Santa Clara County, please contact Luiza Naslausky at


Nutrition Student Projects

If you have professional skills or specific project ideas, we would love to work with you to create a volunteer project that suits your needs and contributes to the nutrition department! Work on special projects, such as developing and evaluating school-based pantry education curricula, consulting on recipe development, and researching best practices for client outreach. Please contact Elena Hollander, the Community Nutrition Manager, at, including your skills and availability.