Connecting People and Building Resilient
Community: It's a Two Way Street
Food Access Centre
The Emergency Food Bank was established in 1991 to address the growing number of families experiencing hunger. Each month 400 households come to Welcome Inn Community Centre and receive a three-day supply of food and personal hygiene items. We believe that food is a basic human right, so no one is turned away from receiving. This service is operated primarily by a dedicated group of volunteers. We recently have become a Good Food Organization and are working together with our partners for a healthy and fair food system for all.
Hours of Operation:
Monday, Wednesday, Friday, 11:30 am – 2:00 pm
What to bring:
ID for each member of the household, proof of address
Note: The Welcome Inn food bank can be accessed once per household every 30 days
Each week as community members come in to pick up groceries, there is an opportunity to participate in the food literacy program. Cooking demonstrations of low cost, available and easy-to-cook meals are taught. Information about new foods, recipes and cooking techniques are shown to the group, then delicious samples are given out. As people pick up their groceries, food items from the recipe are available to select. With increased food literacy, we hope to improve food security through knowledge, access and use of nutritious foods.
Good Food Box
The Good Food Box is a non-profit fresh fruit and vegetable distribution program based out of Environment Hamilton; Welcome Inn is a partner in the program and a pick-up site.
The Good Food Box makes healthy fresh food affordable and accessible. For only $15, people receive a box of fresh quality produce worth $25 or more. Food is bought at wholesale prices, with a preference for Ontario farmers. Anyone can sign up for a Good Food Box, and while Welcome Inn is one site to pick-up, there are pick-up locations all over the City!
Orders are placed with North Hamilton Community Health Centre and paid for in cash by the second Wednesday of the month. They can be picked up at Welcome Inn on the third Wednesday of the month between 2-5pm.
What’s in a box?
A typical box contains 11 different items, including potatoes, 1-2 root vegetables, 1-2 other vegetables, 1-2 salad greens, bananas, 3-4 other fruit items, and 1 less common item with tips on how to use it.
We believe in the power of connection and good food to work together in alleviating poverty. Our food access programs offer various avenues for community members to connect and access nutritious, healthy, fresh foods in a variety of ways. Having the opportunity to access healthy, fresh items that are within walking distance and less expensive than the nearby convenience stores will help to increase nutrition and decrease access to traditional food banks. The purchase of the items provides a dignified exchange and opportunity for folks to access the benefits of healthy, low cost foods who otherwise might not receive such benefits. Each year through our market chicken sale, we coordinate the distribution of fresh from the farm, free-range whole chickens. The large birds are perfect for community members to freeze and save for their Christmas meal.
Each season we have garden beds that are available for community members to access to plant, cultivate and harvest food that supplements recipes taught in the food literacy program. In the spring, a seedling swap and seed exchange take place with workshops on good gardening practices. Through partnership with other local groups, we are able to extend the knowledge of resources available to our community members.