This page includes important COVID-19 guidelines for our event volunteers and donors. Please read these guidelines carefully. Thank you for doing your part to keep all of our volunteers safe.

If you or someone you know needs food assistance at this time, click here for a list of local resources that could help.

Si usted o alguien que conozca necesita asistencia alimenticia en este momento, haga clic aquí para obtener una lista de recursos locales que podrían ayudar. 

COVID-19 Volunteer Guidelines

Our TOP PRIORITY is keeping all volunteers healthy and safe. 


Please read these guidelines carefully.


All volunteers are required to wear a mask at all times and stay 6-10 feet away from anyone with whom you don’t reside. Before signing in and beginning work, please disinfect your hands. Remember to wash your hands (or disinfect) thoroughly when you’re finished, and have fun!


Please DO NOT volunteer if, in the last 14 days, you or someone with whom you reside have:

  • Had any of the symptoms related to COVID-19 as identified by the Centers for Disease Control;
  • Received a positive COVID-19 test (or are waiting on COVID-19 test results);
  • Been around anyone who has COVID-19; 
  • Been asked to quarantine (CDC Quarantine Guidelines);
  • Traveled to any foreign country;
  • Traveled via cruise ship, train, bus or airline;
  • Been to an event with more than 50 people;
  • Failed to follow Virginia requirements for wearing a mask in indoor public spaces, regardless as to whether these spaces are in Virginia or another US State, territory, or the District of Columbia; or
  • Placed yourself in a location or situation considered high risk for contracting the coronavirus.

Please DO NOT volunteer if you are in a higher-risk category for the virus or if you are in frequent contact with one or more people who are in higher-risk categories for the virus.  


If you believe yourself to be free of the coronavirus and other infectious diseases, then, the evening before and the morning of your service, do a quick temperature check to make sure your temperature is normal (98.6 average). 


Please DO NOT show up to volunteer for an event if you have not previously signed up to assist.


Even with all of these precautions, Food For Neighbors is unable to guarantee that volunteers will not contract the coronavirus. 


While you are volunteering, please remember to practice universal infection control precautions.

  • Wear your mask at all times. (Masks with respiration valves or vents are not permitted.)
  • Clean and wash your hands (for a minimum of 20 seconds) before you sign in, during the event, and after volunteering . If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.
  • Avoid physical contact with others and maintain a social distance of 6-10 feet.
  • Cover any sudden cough and sneezes with your elbow or tissue. (If you have a frequent or persistent cough or sneeze, please do not volunteer.)
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.

We encourage all FFN volunteers to download the COVID-wise app from the Virginia Dept. of Health to assist with contact tracing if the need arises.


Please always check your email prior to an event. Plans can change quickly sometimes, and we will use email to communicate those changes.

The September 12 Red Bag Event

Has anything changed for Red Bag Donors?

Things will stay pretty much the same since our pickup process is already safe and contactless.

  • Please remember to reply to the text to let us know if you're leaving a bag and then just remember to put your filled bag out before 8:30 a.m. on pickup day.
  • Our grocery list is modified.  Please fill your Red Bag with the items we put in the student weekend bags (no family-sized items).  See the list below.
  • If your bag is not picked up by 11:30 on pickup day, click here.
  • If you can't leave a bag, please remember to reply to our text so we don't include you in the September route planning. And remember that you can always donate a virtual bag on our website.
  • If you have other questions about the Red Bag Program, check out our Red Bag page and our FAQ page.


What is the grocery list for September 12?

We have a MODIFIED grocery list for September 12. We cannot accept any family-sized items because the pantries in our schools are closed. We are collecting individual items that we include in our student weekend bags. Please leave all items in their original packaging for this event and check expiration dates.

  • individual cup of noodles
  • individual mac n cheese cups
  • individual milk boxes (chocolate preferred)
  • juice boxes/pouches (100% juice preferred)
  • individual applesauce and fruit cups
  • individual snack crackers, like peanut butter sandwich crackers
  • granola bars
  • fruit/cereal bars
  • individual oatmeal packets
  • gallon sized Ziploc bags


What do I need to know if I am a Driver Volunteer? 

Your process should remain the same. We will be asking you and your team to wear masks and will provide you with hand sanitizer. 

  • Your route may start a little later so we can stagger the finishing times and ensure social distancing when we unload vehicles.
  • Please do not exit your vehicle at the drop off site - a team of volunteers will unload your vehicle for you.
  • The drop-off locations have changed as we won't have access to school buildings. 
  • All of that information will be communicated to you when you receive your route. Please read all the texts and emails carefully so you know when to start and where to go.
  • Driver volunteers will start receiving information via email and text in mid to late August.


Will you still need Sorting Volunteers on September 12? 

Yes! We will need volunteers! But due to school closures and difficulties with weekend food distribution, some areas will not have an actual sorting event. We are still working through this issue, but food will be collected in all areas. Some food, however, may be directed to local food pantries that serve our families. If your area does have an event, then it will be much smaller in scale. The best we can tell you right now is "please stay tuned." We are working on "the where and the how" for each of our five sorting location. We are working closely with each school to determine how we can best help them this fall. Many of the details can't be finalized just yet, so we thank you in advance for your patience.

  • We'll contact sorting volunteers via email with instructions (including a Sign-up Genius link) in mid to late August with everything you need to know.
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Food For Neighbors is located in Herndon, VA, and proudly serves local middle and high school students in Fairfax County and Loudoun County.

© Food For Neighbors®

Food for Neighbors® is a tax-exempt, 501(c)(3) public charity and your donation is tax-deductible under U.S. tax law. To claim a donation as an itemized deduction on your taxes, please keep your email donation receipt that we will send you. Any funds raised in excess of our goal for any particular project will be automatically applied to the other ongoing work of Food for Neighbors®.