Sycamore Dining  Volunteer Opportunities


We prepare and cook all our meals in our kitchen at Foxton Gardens, Frampton Road, Beechdale, Nottingham NG8 3FR.

Long term we would like to be providing social dining five days a week, but this is dependent on us having a pool of volunteers to draw from on a daily basis. Our ideal is to have a kitchen team for each day of the week, but we can be as flexible as we need to be, as we recognise you have other commitments you need to work around, whether its work, family, or other activities you enjoy doing.

What is important to us is that you tell us when you can volunteer, and that you are reliable to your commitment.

Team Leader / Chef

We are looking for a Team Leaders, one for every day of the week.

You might be a trainee chef, or a cook looking for some managerial or supervisory experience, or retired and likes taking responsibility.

You will be responsible for running the kitchen, for ensuring you have sufficient volunteers for the days requirements, for ensuring the meals are prepared and cooked to the required times, and for ensuring our safe methods of work are followed by all volunteers.

You will have as a minimum, Food Hygiene level 2 qualification.

Cook / Catering Assistant

We are looking for a number of cooks or catering assistants to work in our kitchen when it is open, to help prepare, cook, and clear up after service. No experience is necessary, but would be an advantage.

You will work as a member of a team, reporting to a team leader. You can get involved as much as you feel comfortable with, and have the time too.

You will be required to work using our safe methods of work, which you will be trained in, and to acquire your food hygiene level 2 qualification. 

Catering Assistant - Vegetable Preparation

We are looking for people that can spare 60 to 90 minutes a day to help prepare the vegetables. This means you will be cleaning, peeling and chopping vegetables prior to cooking. You will need to be available from 9.30am.

You will be working as a member of a team, reporting to the team leader.

We will train you in our food hygiene and safe methods of work.

Kitchen Porter / Pot Washer

We are looking for people who are happy to wash pots and clean down following service. Our catering pots, trays and pans are washed by hand. We us a dishwasher to clean our crockery and cutlery.

You will be trained how to use the dishwasher, and with our methods for washing the catering equipment.

Waiter / Waitress

We are looking for volunteers to serve meals to our customers and to clear tables. This could either be on Mondays, Wednesdays or Fridays at Foxton Gardens, Beechdale, or to travel to other locations around the City on Wednesdays and/or Fridays

Social Care

Befriender and Event Co-ordinator

We are looking for1 or 2 volunteers at each of our venues to welcome and engage with our customers and to over see the serving of meals, clearing tables and washing up the crockery and cutlery.

The role could also be co-ordinating activities around our social dining, giving our customers a good all-round experience. 

You will need to be friendly and understanding, and offer a high level of customer service, while working as a team member with our other volunteers.

Activity Co-ordinator

The 3 key factors affecting the elderly are nutrition, exercise and social isolation. While social dining is addressing nutrition and social isolation and loneliness, it is currently missing exercise. We wish to address this by hosting an activity before or after the meal that promotes physical activity and fun. We are looking for a volunteer activity co-ordinator to plan these events and work with other volunteers in running the events.


We transport our food to sheltered housing community rooms to serve our social meals to the elderly.

We are looking for volunteers to provide the transportation from our kitchen to events around the City.

You will be required to pick up the food and equipment required on a timely basis, take it to the venue, and unload and deliver to the serving area at the venue. Following the meal, you will be required to return the equipment to the kitchen.

We pay 45p per mile to cover your out of pocket expenses.

Our volunteers can choose to combine the roles outlined above. We have volunteers that work in the kitchen, help transport food and equipment to venues, and serve at the venues.

Why Volunteer?

People volunteer for a variety of reasons, normally as a means to improving the quality of life, or the health and wellbeing of themselves, and for others. Our volunteers are from a variety of ages (13 to 70) and backgrounds.

The following are examples of people that have volunteered for Sycamore Dining.

Retired from many years of working

Retiring from a busy work life leads to a life changing experience, where the individual needs to adapt after getting through the initial jobs list. The individual still needs to feel fulfilled, to achieve, to meet people, to get out of the house, and to be busy. What better way than to volunteer and help support others that are often less fortunate than you.

Long term unemployed

Volunteering is a great way of getting work experience, which helps build your self confidence, helps get you back into the routine of work life, and to gain more work skills and life skills that can be added to your CV. As well as experience, Sycamore Dining is also able to offer volunteers a range of employability and training initiatives that support them into work and create better lives for themselves, their families and their communities. They aim to give volunteers the best possible opportunities, to gain experience that will prepare them for employment, help them to progress in work, or support them to become self-employed.

Work Experience for Students

Often a requirement of 6th form, further education colleges and university is some work experience related to the subject being studied. We offer volunteering opportunities so you can gain this invaluable experience.

DofE Community Service

We are able to offer Duke of Edinborough Award community service volunteering during school holidays for young people aged 13+.

Volunteer Policy

Sycamore Dining Volunteering is Age Friendly and Inclusive. This means: -

Volunteering is Flexible and Responsive:

  • It fits around your life – you tell us which shifts you can work

  • When your life changes, you can adjust your commitment without feeling you’ve let us down

  • You know how to get involved, what you are being asked to do, and how to stop.

Volunteering is Enabled and Supported:

  • You will receive practical help with access, expenses, and any training you want and need

  • You will be supported and know who to turn to with any questions

Volunteering is Sociable and Connected:

  • You have opportunities to meet and spend time with other people, including people from different backgrounds and age groups

  • You will feel a part of something

Our Volunteers are Valued and Appreciated:

  • The value of your effort is recognised, and people regularly let you know you’re valued – through what they say and do

  • You will feel like people appreciate what you do

Volunteering is Meaningful and Purposeful:

  • The work you do means something to you and feels purposeful

  • You feel that what you do is worthwhile

Volunteering Makes Good Use of Your Strengths:

  • It allows you to use the skills and experiences you’ve built up during your life, and gives you opportunities to try out and learn new things

  • You feel like your experience is respected and valued

Equal Opportunities

No Sycamore Dining volunteer should receive less favourable treatment based on: class or socio-economic status; ethnic origin; nationality or race; gender (including gender reassignment); marital or civil partnership status; sexual orientation; disability; pregnancy and political or religious belief (including the absence of belief). All Sycamore Dining volunteers should seek to practise equality.

Volunteer Training

A benefit of volunteering with Sycamore Dining is the access we have to: -  

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We encourage all our catering volunteers to attain Food Hygiene level 2 qualification.

Our volunteers however are able to attend any of the tenant academy courses.


This volunteer driving opportunity is for you to use your own car to bring isolated, elderly people to one of Sycamore Dining's social eating venues and to take them home
afterwards. You will be an important part of your passenger's life because you could be one of a small number of people that they see each week.

We also need drivers to deliver meals to the homes of the elderly and vulnerable, a service we started as Covid-19 lockdown started.
So you will need to make a regular commitment, although there will also be a need for occasional drivers to fill-in for holidays and other times when the regular driver is not
You will get mileage expenses of 45p per mile as well as the chance to meet new people and to become part of the great team that delivers Sycamore Dining's meals across

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Sycamore Dining CIC, registered in England, company number 11598954

Our registered address is Wood Rising, Hockerton Road, Kirklington, Newark NG22 8PB

Our operating address

Foxton Gardens, Frampton Road, Beechdale, Nottingham, NG6 3FR

Phone +44 7967 034276