Volunteer Experience | Community Development

Portugal: Food Shop Volunteer

Lisbon, Portugal


Location: Lisbon, Portugal

Duration: Minimum 2 week

Start Dates: Project is on-going, and you can join at any time, depending upon availability. Placements start each Monday

Cost: £750 GBP per week – see Costs section for more details

Includes: All food, accommodation, airport pickup, orientation and all project related activities

Does not Include: flights, travel insurance, visas and vaccinations

Costs Explained


Embark on a transformative journey with our volunteer project as we address the pressing issues of homelessness and food waste in Portugal’s thriving urban landscapes. In recent years, the rise in homelessness by 78% has become a stark reality, fueled by a real-estate crisis and the surge in drug addictions. Simultaneously, the global dilemma of food waste exacerbates the challenges faced by those in need.

Our mission is clear: combat food waste while actively contributing to nourishing the vulnerable segments of our society. This initiative promises a win-win scenario for all involved. No longer will perfectly good food go to waste; no one will endure hunger. Citizens are invited to dedicate a small fraction of their time to be catalysts for change, fostering a local circular economy that generates social benefits.

By joining this project, you play a pivotal role in channeling your efforts towards collecting surplus food from restaurants, transforming it into nutritious meals, and delivering them to individuals and families in need. Your tasks encompass various aspects, from food preparation and serving to organizing behind-the-scenes logistics and cleanup efforts. Together, we will make a tangible impact on several families in Lisbon, fostering a sense of community and shared responsibility. Join us in shaping a better, more compassionate world, one meal at a time.

Daily Life

Your role encompasses a range of responsibilities aimed at ensuring the success of our mission. Here’s a breakdown of what you can expect:

**Food Basket Preparations:**
Assist in the meticulous preparation of food baskets, contributing to the efficient organisation of resources.

**Food Ingredient Preparation:**
Handle the preparation of food ingredients, ensuring the quality and freshness of each component.

**Donation Management:**
Take charge of organising and storing donated food items, maintaining a systematic and accessible inventory.

**Meal Service:**
Participate in serving meals to local individuals, offering a warm and compassionate touch to those in need.

**Kitchen Hygiene:**
Diligently maintain the cleanliness and sanitation of cooking equipment and storage areas, upholding high hygiene standards.

**Daily Shifts:**
Commit to a minimum of four hours a day, with the flexibility to engage in two different shifts during program activities.

**Personal Hygiene Practices:**
Adhere to hygiene protocols by wearing hairnets or caps to prevent hair from falling into food or equipment. Prioritize handwashing with soap and water before commencing any food preparation.

Be flexible in adapting to potential changes in time and schedules, respecting the guidance provided by your local program coordinator.

**Respectful Conduct:**
Demonstrate respect towards local staff, fellow participants, and the community at large. Actively engage in day-to-day operations, fostering a positive and collaborative environment.

**Embrace the Experience:**
Embrace the journey, make the most of your stay, and create memorable learning experiences as you actively contribute to our shared mission. Your dedication is integral to the success of our endeavour.



  • Welcome to Portugal! Arrival orientation and introduction to Portuguese traditions and culture, house rules, and code of conduct
  • Basic Portuguese Lesson
  • Walking tour around local interest spots
  • Dinner

Tuesday to Friday

  • Breakfast
  • Depart for the placement
  • Assist in the preparation of food baskets, working in the kitchen, cleaning the area, and serving food.
  • Lunch
  • Assist in the preparation of food baskets, working in the kitchen, cleaning the area, and serving food.
  • Possibility to collect or distribute food.
  • Dinner

***This schedule can be changed and/or amended depending on weather conditions, local conditions and unforeseen circumstances.***

Book with Confidence

Travel and Accom.

You will be met at the airport and transported to the project.

You will stay in dorm style accommodation is Cascais. You will be staying in dorm style accommodation with 4-10 people per room. There is free wifi and laundry facilitates. All bed lined and towels are provided, as well as AC for the summer months.

The meals are traditional meals served unique to the area. You can also eat out at any of the local restaurants.

Fundraising Help


  • Minimum age 18
  • Passion and enthusiasm for environmental conservation
  • Not afraid to get your hands dirty!
  • Ability to work within a team environment
  • Minimum 2 weeks commitment
  • CRB Police check (or equivalent) showing that you have no previous criminal convictions
  • Good English skills
  • Necessary vaccinations
  • Necessary flight & visas
  • Full travel & medical insurance. Full assistance will be provided in getting everything you will need ready if you choose our Placement Support Package.
Premium Support Upgrade


£750 GBP per week

* Check the latest currency conversions with xe.com
** All payments incur a 5% bank transfer fee
*** Placements are confirmed with a 1 week deposit, minimum 2 weeks booking

What’s Included:

Project Fee includes food, accommodation, airport pickup, orientation, in-country support and project activities.

What’s not included:

Flights, insurance, visas (if applicable) and vaccinations. Full assistance will be provided in getting all these arranged if you choose our Premium Support.

Premium Support Upgrade

We understand there’s a great deal to plan and organise for your trip. When booking a Placement, many of our participants choose to purchase our Premium Support Upgrade to benefit from the expertise, knowledge and experience of our Project Coordinators.

We can provide the personal advice you need to ensure your trip is organised with excellence and planned with efficiency; ensuring the very best experience possible. Read more about how we can help you.

Note: Map coordinates are approximate