About Cooking Matters
Cooking Matters offers cooking and nutrition classes focused on maximizing food resources to community members in low-income areas. We provide hands-on education, combining cooking, nutrition, menu planning, budgeting, kitchen safety and sanitation.
Each Cooking Matters class is led by a team of three trained volunteers – a Cooking Facilitator, a Nutrition Facilitator and a Class Assistant – who work alongside a staff coordinator to facilitate fun, lively and informative classes for participants. Volunteers work with the participants on educational activities and preparing a shared meal. Classes are held at community organizations, public and transitional housing sites, schools, and other service-providing agencies throughout Seattle and King County.
During class, the Cooking Facilitator will discuss topics such as food budgeting, planning meals, making healthy cooking choices, and making informed decisions at the grocery store. Classes are intended to be highly participatory, meaning that the “students” will be cooking with you! It is important to keep the participants busy with various tasks and allow for hands-on learning in the kitchen, while making sure that they use safe techniques. Some cooking skills to demonstrate and practice in class include: proper knife handling skills, various cooking methods, food safety, recipe reading and sanitation practices.
Classes meet once a week for six weeks. Each week the classes require a time commitment of two hours plus 30 minutes of prep time and 30 minutes of clean up. Volunteers are encouraged to contribute to all facets of the class, including lesson planning, setup and cleanup. All together for one course series, you will commit about 18 hours of volunteer time, in addition to any lesson planning and prep.
Once you attend the Solid Ground New Volunteer Orientation and complete the volunteer application process, please attend our Community Food Education New Volunteer Training, where you will learn more about Cooking Matters and volunteer expectations, including getting your Food Handler’s Permit. After the training, you will be able to sign up for any open volunteer class positions.
- Experience preparing and cooking food as a home cook or professionally
- Some teaching experience is preferred, but not required if willing to learn
- Ability to pass WA state background check
- Ability to work collaboratively within a team, and one-on-one with team members
- Strong organizational skills and time management skills
- Excellent communication skills
- Ability to lift 30 pounds; work conditions include standing, pushing, pulling, lifting and bending
- Must be extremely reliable
- Bilingual skills, especially in Spanish, are highly desired!
(This opportunity qualifies for RSVP applicants.)