Guide for Volunteer Cooks
We Welcome You!
The staff affectionately refers to our volunteer cooks as our “cooks”! Each and every cook lightens the burden of Good Neighbor Alliance as well as “feeding” our guests. Our cooks feed our guests more than an evening meal. They feed and nourish as well as fellowship with our guests. We have been told that the cooks often feel they get more out of the experience than the guests! No matter your calling we greatly appreciate our cooks!!!
The premise of the Community Supported Meal Program is to afford Good Neighbor Alliance to look to the local area churches, service clubs, and civic organizations to help feed our shelter guests and neighbors.
Number of Meals
The number of meals is based on occupancy of the shelter on any given day. We would like groups to provide meals for approximately 15-20 individuals for the evening meal. The shelter can have up to 20 guests during normal circumstances. This does not take into account extreme weather conditions (winter or summer) when Good Neighbor Alliance may be called upon to meet increased demand. You can call ahead for a head count.
Those who are cooking are encouraged to check out our stock of food while planning meal preparation and menus. In the event you have identified items that you would like to use, please label the items so they are waiting for you when you arrive to cook. You can do this on weekdays during our Administrative Hours from 1pm to 4pm Monday through Friday.
We are sorry that we cannot accommodate other times as Good Neighbor Alliance operations is dependent on funding.
Who Provides the Food?
Concerned groups, churches, and individuals! Due to extremely limited resources, we ask those organizations that are going to prepare to also provide the food. Please “shop” our pantry first as the community has been very generous with donating food stuff to us!
Dinner is Served
Cooks can arrive and begin cooking at 4:00pm. To be in compliance with the Health Department, all foods must be prepared in the Good Neighbor Alliance Kitchen. Staff will be onsite to unlock the kitchen door.
Dinner is served at approximately 6:00pm. Dinner is normally served buffet style. When serving buffet style there needs to be someone watching to make sure there is plenty of food for those at the back of the line. Cafeteria style would ensure that the portions are equal.
Some Extra Facts
The kitchen area isn’t large! Approximately 3-5 people should be sufficient.
Clean up is done by our shelter guests.
Nutrition and Dietary Restrictions
It is desirable that meals prepared and served at the shelter be balanced. Please keep in mind that processed foods high in starches, sweetness and are available to our guests on a regular basis, i.e. breads, donuts, rolls, etc. A main dish, side veggie, or salad and fruits are desired as menu items. Drinks and desserts are optional. Recommended beverages are juices, milk, and iced tea. Good Neighbor Alliance will create a form for our guests to complete asking of any known food allergies and particular restrictions. These will be available to the groups who are preparing and serving meals.
Frequency of Meals
The recommended frequency would be one evening meal per month. This is negotiable and is most likely dependent upon the resources of the volunteer group and/or church. If once a month is too difficult, the group may want to consider every other month. Something to consider is to commit to once per month but get a different group of people to commit every other month or with less frequency.
Take a Look!
If you would like to take a look at our kitchen: You can do this during our Administrative Hours from 1pm to 4pm Monday through Friday.
Food Handler’s Certification
The Food Handler’s Certification is no longer required for Cochise County. However, you can make yourself aware of proper food handling guidelines on the USDA Website.
How to Use the Phone Intercom to Reach Shelter Staff
Pick up phone receiver
Press blue “Front Desk” button (ext. 11)
Line will beep until staff answers
Return Receiver to cradle to end call
Please do not answer the phone if it rings. Staff will take care of any calls.
Call for “guest count” at (520) 439-0776
Arrive at 4pm
Dinner at 6pm
To shop pantry – 1pm to 4pm Monday through Friday
All food must be prepared in Good Neighbor Alliance kitchen. Purchased restaurant meals are acceptable