About Just Call Us Volunteers
We are an ALL VOLUNTEER organization.
We’re a diverse group of San Diegans with something powerful in common: a love of food and healthy eating, and a desire to give back to our community by helping the less fortunate. We are chefs and food writers, nutritionists, farmers market vendors, restaurant owners, parents, teachers, computer engineers, bankers and just people who simply love our community and want all of its members to thrive.
Just Call Us Volunteers began in 2005, when we started preparing and serving healthy holiday meals to San Diego County winter shelter residents. In the past seven years, Just Call Us Volunteers has served 26,000 meals. We now offer this service year round through our partnership with the Alpha Project.
In February 2010, Just Call Us Volunteers launched what has become a successful volunteer program at Olivewood Gardens in National City. We brought guest chefs and others in the food community to this magical property to teach hands-on cooking classes to low-income children in grades 4 to 6 from the National City School District. Just Call Us Volunteers brought over 80 chef volunteers, along with sous chefs and kitchen helpers, to Olivewood Gardens.
Chef Julie Darling is our organization’s founder and volunteers her time as President of Just Call Us Volunteers. Her day (and sometimes night) job is running her own catering and kitchen rental business in San Diego, CA.
Julie was born and raised in San Diego in a family who believed in giving back. Julie’s mom was in the Junior League of San Diego and Julie was invited to join their ranks in 1980. She was active in JLSD for 13 years. She was also a member of Rotary for many years.
Julie has served on many committees, chaired several fundraising events and donated her catering services to numerous charities including the Charity Ball, Starlight Opera, Art Alive, Helen Woodward’s Spring Fling, Rady Children’s Hospital, San Diego Center For Children, St Madeline Sophie, Fruit of the Soul, Les Dames D’Escoffier and Olivewood Gardens and Learning Center to name a few.
Julie is as interested in serving nutritious meals to San Diego’s homeless adults as she is in teaching healthy eating behaviors to low income families in San Diego. Julie also attended the First Lady’s White House launch of Chef’s Move to School in June 2010. She is convinced that getting back to the basics of nutrition with fresh vegetables and clean meat will significantly help our families thrive and might even lower health care costs for our children, disadvantaged and homeless alike.
Julie lives with her therapy dog Cami and her kitty Zoe. Cami has a weekly visiting schedule at The San Diego Center for Children, a group home for foster kids.