Volunteer Food Runners FAQs

These are frequently asked questions about volunteering as a CFR food runner.

Q: Who can volunteer as a food runner? What do I need to have? What’s the commitment?

We welcome individuals, families, and groups to volunteer as food runners if the driver is 18+ years, has a good driving record and auto insurance, a clean vehicle, and a few extra hours. Volunteers can choose to sign up for regular weekly food runs or one-time or occasional food runs. You choose the geographic quadrants of Montgomery County in which you’d like to pick up food.

Q: I’m part of a civic group. Can I list my group if I don’t see it on the list of groups?

Yes, fill in the box with the name of your group and we will add it to the list. Next time you log in, you may choose this group to affiliate your volunteer work with.

 Q: How do I learn how to handle and transport food safely?

Food Safety is critical for the well-being of all food recipients. We ask that all volunteers review safe food handling guidelines and view the food runner training video as part of signing up.  After reviewing, you will take a short multiple choice quiz. Once you successfully complete the quiz, CFR will activate your account and you will begin receiving food run requests. If you don’t pass the quiz the first time around, you can review the information and take it again. You can find safe food handling information and videos on the CFR website.

Q: How am I matched up to a food donor and recipient organization?

When a business posts a donation it is automatically matched to one of the CFR network food assistance organizations. Then all volunteers that specify the donor’s geographic quadrant will receive an email request with the details including timeframe, location and any special instructions. The first volunteer to accept the food run will get it. As soon as a volunteer food runner accepts the run and all parties are notified with details and contact information.

Q: How will donors and recipients know that I’m a CFR volunteer food runner? What CFR supplies will I get to handle and transport food safely?

All active volunteers will receive a CFR cap and car magnet in the mail.  Please wear your CFR hat and place the magnet on your car during food runs. You will need to print a Food Donation Tracking Form to complete and take on every food run. Have the donor, recipient, and yourself sign the form and leave it with the recipient for their files to satisfy health regulations. For a complete list of items to take on food runs, click HERE. Recipient organizations may have CFR tool kits including log sheets, thermometers and alcohol swabs to take the temperature of prepared foods, and thermal bags and ice packs to keep food cold during transport if needed. Or, you may want to invest in an instant read thermometer if you transport prepared foods.

Q: What do I need to do after a food run?

After a food run, all participants are asked to rate their food run experience. Your feedback improves the food run experience for everyone and helps CFR improve the system overall.

Q: How can I support food businesses that donate their unsold food?

CFR celebrates food donors and recipient organizations working together. We’re partnering with Food Recovery Certified to give food businesses the opportunity to become a nationally-recognized certified food donor. Donors receive a window sticker and a placard listing recipient organizations. Tell food donors that CFR offers a free one year certification to the first 15 businesses that sign up—that’s a $100 value. For more information, visit the Food Recovery Certified website.  Also, we encourage everyone to patronize food businesses that donate their unsold food.

Q: Are Student Service Learning (SSL) hours available for my school-aged child to participate?

Unfortunately no. Due to the nature of food running being about transportation, we don’t have a way to supervise or verify that this work was accomplished by the student, so this activity doesn’t fit the criteria needed for SSL hours.

If you have another question, please contact Cheryl@communityfoodrescue.org.

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