Mantralogix Team Making a Difference in Our Community At the Eden Community Food Bank
‘Twas the Friday before the Thanksgiving long weekend – and hardly anyone came to work – and we couldn’t be happier! Where was everyone? The Mantralogix team banded together to provide their services at the Eden Community Food Bank on Unity Drive in Mississauga. Thanks to their vision and amazing volunteers the Eden Community Food Bank (ECFB) organizes opportunities for groups to come in and volunteer their time and resources to support the many programs that they run!
The Mantralogix team was prepared to work hard and have fun together as a team while making a difference in our community– what they didn’t realize is just how much they would learn about the community’s need for a food bank and the many ways these needs are being filled!
Here are just a few facts that struck our team:
- The ECFB serves 4 postal codes in Mississauga (out of 23)
- 46% of those that use the ECFB are children
- Each client is able to take away 26 pounds of food per visit
- All foods are screened for best before dates
- 2 of the foods that run out the fastest (and therefore for which there is always a need) are cereal and cookies (see fact #2); also true for juice, especially apple
- A local Tim’s franchise donates all the sugar and coffee ECFB needs (awesome!!)
- Most donated soup is tomato; most needed is chicken noodle
- Thanks to local bakeries and grocery stores, ample bread (you should see the variety!) is donated
- The ECFB employs 5 staff and engages over 175 volunteers weekly
- There is a huge focus on fresh produce
- There is a significant focus at ECFB on eating healthy; there are several programs just dedicated to promoting healthy food choices (which we can all benefit from!). The Food Bank is transitioning to a Food Centre! In fact, one of the newer programs is the ability to purchase produce boxes from ECFB regardless of your income level. You can opt for the $10 or $20 box – and allow Peter, the ECFB chef, to decide what fresh produce goes into the box. Research done by a friend of the ECFB reveals that the $20 box contains approximately $75 of produce that you and I could buy retail. Boxes are available by ordering in advance and pick-ups are on Fridays between 2-4 pm; cash only!
- Other heartwarming programs include food delivery to those with disabilities and the birthday present program where donated toys are set aside for birthday children.
- Just a few weeks ago ECFB launched another program which allows clients and the community to use their commercial grade kitchen (which is a chef’s dream!). ECFB is teaching clients how to cook and how to cook foods you might not ordinarily consider because of how they look or because you don’t know what to do with them (eg: turnips). Cooking classes are held for those with barriers to employment so that they might find jobs in the cooking industry. Also, volunteers and clients can come in and cook and vacuum seal food for further use and distribution.
The Mantralogix team certainly didn’t expect to come away with so much learning. We are grateful for the opportunity to support amazing organizations like this in our community – and our community is richer thanks to ECFB!
A huge thanks to our customers too for their patience while we were all out of the office for the morning – thanks for your understanding while our team was able to make a small difference in the lives of many others!