Above, Flesherton and Community Food Bank Coordinator Marian Doyle at the food bank before opening on a Tuesday morning. The shelves were full but by the end of the day the shelves would be almost empty.
In 2017 the Flesherton and Community Food Bank distributed 731 boxes, 60 boxes per month on average, to 53 families (93 adults and 70 children) in the communities of Flesherton, Ceylon, Eugenia, Priceville, Feversham and Maxwell.
Services include provisions of groceries and clothing, all provided for free to community members in need. Doyle said she assesses the need of each recipient to determine their level of access and works with approximately 10 volunteers. "We are lucky to have so many volunteers," she said.
Community outreach is also provided by the Gentle Shepherd Community Church and donations are received from community groups as well as schools such as Macphail Memorial Elementary School.
The Flesherton and Community Food Bank operates year round and residents can access it twice each month, on the second and fourth Tuesday from 10 a.m. until noon.
The most needed items include canned fruit, jam, juice, dish soap, and hand soap.
Food donations can be dropped off and services can be accessed at the former Cedarside Baptist Church, 46 Collingwood Street in Flesherton.
Donations can also be dropped off at Markdale Foodland or email Doyle at email@example.com.
Markdale Foodland also donates items to both the Flesherton and Markdale food banks.
The Markdale Food Bank is also open twice monthly, on the second and fourth Thursday of the month from 10 a.m. until noon and provides non-perishable food items to families in need.
It is located at Cooke's Presbyterian Church, 14 George Street in Markdale. To make a donation or to access services, contact Carl Herman at 519-986-1432 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Markdale Food Bank is not wheelchair accessible.
The Durham and District Food Bank is open Tuesday and Friday from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. but clients are not able to access a physical location, said Chairperson Audrey Kell. Deliveries can be arranged by calling 519-386-6860.
"If they're out of town, a rural route address, they can come into town and we meet them at the south end of the Credit Union parking lot," said Kell. "Otherwise we deliver in town."
Durham provides clients mostly with non perishable food items but, Kell said, sometimes the Mount Forest Food Bank will have extra bagels or muffins which they will share with Durham. The Father's Table in Mount Forest also provides items occasionally, when they have leftovers from community dinners.
Clients of the Durham and District Food Bank will be receiving a full Christmas dinner including turkey, potatoes, turnip, carrots, apples, oranges, stuffing and cranberries. "Children 16 and under will also get a gift," explained Kell.
Gifts are provided through the West Grey Police Service annual toy drive as well as through the Food Bank Christmas Tag program. Donations for this year's program have already been picked up.
The Dundalk and District Food Bank is located at the Ruth Hargrave Memorial Library, 80 Proton Street North in Dundalk, with food items being delivered to clients in the parking lot.
Pick ups happen on Tuesday at 7 p.m. by appointment. Clients can call Sunday to arrange a Tuesday pick up.
In addition to providing for weekly client needs, the Dundalk and District Food Bank also provides Christmas hampers to individuals and families as well as gifts for children and youth in the Dundalk area.
To contact the Dundalk Food Bank call 519-923-0454.
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