Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Support your local food bank

June is a beautiful month, many songs have been written about it June is Bustin' Out All Over" from Carousel, June Night, On the isle of May to name a few. June is a month of hope, Spring is ending and Summer is on the horizon. We are thinking of holidays and fun in the sun. June is also a great time to consider the role that food banks have in our communities.  Here is some insights into the services that food banks provide to better help recipients meet their own long-term needs from March 2017.

Community kitchens. Many food banks operate community kitchens which are programs that bring together community members. These programs provide workshops to teach participants teach vital cooking skills.  Having food literacy skills like cooking shopping can go a long way to help learn how to use food hamper to make healthy meals.  

Kids programs. Approximately one third of those helped by food banks are children. Good nutrition during infancy and early childhood years is vital to long-term growth and health. That's why food banks often provide special hampers for families with infants and small children. Local food banks will also point their clients to community programs to help educate parents and children on proper nutrition.

Fresh food recovery. Surplus food is an essential part of the food bank ecosystem. Food banks typically access perishable foods by picking up from local grocery stores, restaurants, hotels and cafeterias. In addition to feeding our communities, food recovery programs also help to reduce food waste.

Food hampers. Food hampers remain one of the staple services of food banks in their efforts to help people in need. Food hampers will help provide recipients with essential food items to augment existing food supplies at home when times get tough. According to a 2016 report from the Mississauga Food Bank, only 11 per cent of clients visited the location once or more per month. Community programs, nutritional education and support for other community organizations help relieve food insecurity issues. But they could not operate without the help of volunteers and a steady stream of donations.

This spring, local food banks across Canada partnered with stores like Loblaws and Real Canadian Superstore to collect donations and help feed our communities. 

As the lazy, hazy days of summer come toward us, we need to continue to remember and support our local Food Bank

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