Welcome to another Volunteer Spotlight! Anne is one of our newer volunteers, beginning in April of this year, but she has quickly become an essential part of the Shelter Meals team. She has lived in Seattle for 10 years and found out about HIP through classes at the Lifetime Learning Center, which is located in the same building as HIP. An avid home cook and baker herself, she was excited to find a volunteer opportunity that took place in the kitchen, and wasn’t too far from home.
“I’ve always loved cooking,” Anne explains. “To me, the whole experience of cooking is like creating communion.” Anne doesn’t often get the chance to cook at home, so coming to HIP once or twice a week helps her keep her skills sharp. She also appreciates the opportunity to spend time with other people who love food and have a sense of purpose around the meals they’re preparing.
Another thing that Anne likes about working with HIP is how accommodating the kitchen is. Though health issues make it difficult for her to lift heavy things or stand for long periods of time, Anne still can still come to HIP and feel confident that she is making a difference. “I am totally able to do what I feel like I can do, and then if I need some accommodation…they’ll do it right away. It’s really a lovely experience to be so welcome.”
Anne has a few favorites that have come out of the HIP kitchen. She has adopted HIP’s recipe for garlic bread, which she prefers to call “garlic with bread”. She also enjoyed making a recent meal of baked BBQ chicken on a bed of greens with a berry crumble. In fact, crisps, crumbles, and cookies have become some of Anne’s specialties in the kitchen. She loves how easy it is to bake at HIP compared to in a home kitchen, thanks to our industrial cooking equipment!
Having Anne in the kitchen is a big ego boost for the Shelter Meals staff, since she can often be found raving about the attention to detail that goes into the dinners that are prepared. HIP is so lucky to have volunteers like Anne, who bring both experience in the kitchen plus unwavering support for the work that we do.