Our Hamper Program

On the second and fourth Friday of each month, the Mayne Island Food Bank fills hampers for clients who need a hand up to help them meet their nutritional needs. There is no “means test”. When you call or contact us, if you say you need help, we are there for you.

Depending upon availability of products, your hamper will include such things as pasta, rice or quinoa; tins of soup, beans, vegetables, fruit, and tuna; pasta sauce, macaroni and cheese, eggs, milk, bread and fruit juice. We also provide, when available, peanut butter, coffee, tea, cereal, oatmeal, crackers, jam, snacks, fresh fruit and vegetables as well as meat. Household items such as toilet tissue, shampoo, toothpaste, and soap are often available.

There is also a “Help Yourself” shelf where you will find items we do not have in sufficient quantities to include in the hampers, such as salad dressings, relish, and other condiments. If you have specific nutritional needs, we will try to accommodate your requests.

Most clients come to the depot to pick up their hampers, but we can deliver to those who do not have transportation.

Future Programs

We had planned to have these programs in operation in the Spring of 2020, but the COVID-19 pandemic has put these plans on hold. When we are able the following programs will be instituted:

Community Kitchen

Community Kitchens are a safe, empowering environment where diverse groups of people can come together to learn and share skills of budgeting, planning, shopping, and cooking healthy meals to take home to their families. Once a month the group gathers to prepare 3-5 nutritious meals for their families. Participants learn new cooking skills, such as how to adjust recipes to make them more nutritious, how to increase fruits and vegetables in dishes, and knife handling, to name a few. As well as preparing meals, participants learn how to make soups, jams and jellies, preserve, freeze, and dry fruits and vegetables.

Community Kitchens are more than just preparing food, they celebrate the power of food to bring people together, strengthen community connections and build capacity.

Soup Tuesday

On the Second Tuesday of each month, volunteers for the Food Bank will make pots of soup for serving from 11:30 to 1:30. The soup, a bun, and coffee, tea, or juice will be available to any resident — workers, retired folks or ‘stay-at-home moms and their toddlers — who would like to join others for a quick lunch. We especially invite children from the school, accompanied by an adult, to walk over to the Old School House to enjoy a hot bowl of soup.

Any leftover soup will be packed in containers and frozen for delivery to clients on the following Food Hamper Distribution Day.

Food Recovery

Usable produce and baked goods that have passed their prime are usually discarded and end up in the landfill. Much of this food is often usable with some sorting and trimming. We at the Food Bank plan to make use of this food.

Volunteers will visit the grocery stores to collect this food and bring it to the Old School House where it will be sorted, trimmed and refrigerated or frozen for future distribution.

Food Recovery has become a major undertaking in various cities and towns in North America and we are pleased to be part of this movement.