Frequently Asked Questions
Casserole is a project that connects people who like to cook and are happy to share an extra portion of a delicious home cooked meal, with older neighbours living close by who could really benefit from a hot cooked meal.
Like a local, community-led take-away, Casserole Club members serve up tasty, home-cooked food to their neighbours, getting more people eating and cooking fresh meals while strengthening local neighbourhood relationships with every bite.
Cooks are required to sign up on the site and undertake a short safeguarding process before they can search and contact local Diners. The Casserole team works with local organisations to help reach Diners, we also take direct referrals including from friends and relatives either through our contact number 020 3475 3444 or to firstname.lastname@example.org
The Casserole project is looking to grow quickly across the UK. At the moment we are currently rolling the project out in Tower Hamlets, Barnet and Reigate and Banstead - if you live in one of these areas and want to talk to us please email your local club:
Tower Hamlets - email@example.com
Barnet - firstname.lastname@example.org
Reigate and Banstead - email@example.com
Staffordshire - firstname.lastname@example.org
We’ve learnt that to rollout the Casserole Club in a new area we need to work closely with local organisations like councils, housing associations and charities to sign-up Diners and Cooks. It’s also really important that we provide excellent customer service to our Cooks and Diners, and so we need access to funding to grow in new areas.
We are always keen to talk with new organisations about how we might rollout in new areas, and are working hard to access funding and roll out in new areas of the UK. We’ll keep you updated as soon as we are ready to roll out in your area.
We also really keen to hear from people who might help us to make the case for a Casserole Club roll out in their area too- please get in touch at email@example.com if you can help or you want to get involved locally.
Nope! In fact you are only required to share one meal when you sign up (though we’d obviously love you to share more than once).
We understand that people are busy, and Casserole is a flexible volunteering project. We make sure that Diners understand that they shouldn’t expect to receive a meal from a Cook on a regular, routine basis. We want to make sure that Casserole works best for you, so how often and how much you cook is entirely up to you. Before you cook a meal for your Diner, we’ll put you in touch by phone so that you can discuss what you might cook and when.
Our Diner’s tastes are as diverse as our Cooks. We ask all our Diners if they have any specific dietary requirements and things they really like to eat when they sign up, so these will be on their profile which will give you some idea of what you might be cooking. However, when you get in touch to arrange a meal, we encourage you to ask what they like to eat/tell them what you like to cook and work it out between you both. The idea of Casserole Club is that you are just making an extra portion rather than a meal just for your Diner, so hopefully you will find something you both like. A lot of our Cooks have said that they really enjoy the opportunity to try cooking different things.
We don’t want to dictate how you deliver your meals, so do what makes the most sense for you. We would recommend using a disposable take-away box or sturdy tupperware. As you get to know your Diner and if you are cooking regularly for them you might want to use crockery and pick it up when you next go round, however this is totally up to you. Microwave-safe containers are best if possible.
Food hygiene is really important to us. Every Casserole Cook is requested to read through our hand drawn food hygiene presentation and pass a quiz before serving up their first meal. Alongside this though, we want to develop a level of trust and accountability within our community. The whole ethos behind Casserole is that people are serving extra portions of their own food, so we trust that you will only be serving food you would be happy to eat yourself.
A DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service) is the new version of the Criminal Record Check (or CRB which you may have heard of). As you will be visiting the homes of older and potentially more vulnerable people, we have to take safety very seriously. All our volunteer Cooks have to complete a DBS check before they are introduced to Diners.
We work with recognised providers who can process DBS checks online. We will need to check your ID as part of the DBS check, which we will arrange with you personally at a time that suits you.
We need to see three pieces of ID, which could be one of the following combinations:
Either: Passport + Driving License + Letter with your address e.g. utility bill, letter from the Council, P45 or P60
Or: Passport + 2 x letters with your address e.g. utility bill, letter from the Council, P45 or P60.
As much as possible we encourage Cooks to sign up to Casserole using the website, as this makes our safeguarding process much simpler. The website also gives Cooks the ability to search for local Diners and to see who else is cooking in their area, and so is a really useful tool to help you get cooking quickly.
We understand that not everyone has access to the internet, and this shouldn’t stop you from being able to take part, if you can’t access this internet but do want to Cook - please get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org or 020 3475 3444.
We are signing up as many Diners as fast as we can, but we are still growing so we may not have any Diners close by straight away. New Diners are joining Casserole all the time, so check back regularly and hopefully it won’t be long until there is someone nearby. Also, if you are prepared to travel a little further, by car or bike, boat or bus, that would be great too.
If you know of somebody living in one of our live rollout areas (Tower Hamlets, Barnet or Reigate and Banstead), that could benefit as a Casserole Diner, please email us at email@example.com and we’ll help to get them signed up.
If something doesn’t go to plan (eg. you need to cancel, your can’t get in touch with your Diner etc) please call us straight away on 020 3475 3444. If it's an emergency always call 999 first.
What happens when you go round to deliver a meal is totally up to you and your Diner. You may just deliver food and have a chat at the door, they might ask you in. Do whatever feels right for you. Some Cooks and Diners may want to get to know each other a little better first, others may well be up for a cuppa and a chat!
If for some reason you cannot cook a scheduled meal, please let us know as soon as you can at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 020 3475 3444, especially if it's out of office hours. If you can let your Diner know as well, we would greatly appreciate it, as would they.
Have any questions that haven't been answered here? Get in touch with us at email@example.com or you can give us a call on 020 3475 3444