The Nourishing Hope Hampers
Peter Cheung, the Community Ministries Director shares everything you will need to know about the Nourishing Hope Hampers
COVID-19 Pandemic is a challenging time, not only due to the health issues, death or major overwhelm its causes and the effect on our health care system. This pandemic has caused economic stress to peoples from all walks of life. Some are less fortunate than others. During this time of COVID, we first responded by expanding our Free Food market program. Meeting at needs of basic food, spiritual care with the neighbours that we served out of our office on Fraser and Kingsway. From serving around 200 people per week, the program grew larger than we expected. With the help of the team, we were able to serve close to 600 plus people on a weekly basis. The line went around the whole block and it was stressful not just for those who came, but also for the neighbours our team. This was successful in the moment of operations, however, was not a stopgap measure for our ever-growing demand of resources. In 2021 we planned to adopted more sustainable rhythms while still meeting the basic needs and protecting the community from the potential spread of COVID-19.
Introducing the Nourishing Hope Hampers. This is a program that prioritizes the needs of our neighbours through an assessment as well as scheduling an appointment with the neighbours so that they come at an appointed time. This system avoids them having to line up with a few hundred people at a time, in efforts to increase community safety. This further meets their needs and gives us the opportunity to get to know them on a more personal level so that we can introduce them to something that is greater. This could be either through the Pathway of Hope program that seeks to combine social casework and emotional and spiritual care to help that to break the cycle generation poverty, Or through the Hope of Jesus that we at the Salvation Army gift today.
We have also identified many community partners who help support us with these efforts. These could be via volunteering hours, food donated or collaboration on projects. These connections are instrumental in keeping our programs running. We continue to look for opportunities to collaborate. I want to thank the support of our donor, our collaborating organizations such as the Food Banks, foundations such as the United Way and Agriculture Canada. They have all been instrumental in enabling us to continue our ongoing efforts.
What can someone expect in a Hope Hamper?
Based on the assessment that our caseworkers determine upon communication with the neighbour, we try our very best to fulfill those dietary requirements based on the nutrition needs for themselves or their families. We are aiming to promote healthy lifestyle by education of food groups and nutrients if anyone has questions or seeks clarification. Each hamper is thoughtfully curated by our team so they meet the needs of the families for the required number of days.
What would be the step by step to sign up for a hope hamper?
Our program takes on iterations, and we try to enhance this procedure as the program expands and we continue to respond to the needs of the community. Currently. We have an appointment system but we also have paper-based application forms. Neighbours are required to provide us the information via a phone call after which they will be connected with our many experienced case workers. Neighbours are welcome to stop by at our office during operating hours or give us a ring at 604-872-7676 to be helped by our staff!