As families face increasing pressures from inflation, local food banks are finding themselves in dire situations. Things are no different for the Blackfalds Food Bank and Community Hub which is seeing increased demand recently.
“We are faced with a seemingly ever-increasing need for our services through both our Lunch Box Program and the Food Hamper Program. We've continued to see ever since the beginning of COVID pretty much monthly increases and it's kind of plateaued a little bit for the last two months, but I would say to that it's been a steady increase for sure,” said Chris Keim, Executive Director for the Blackfalds Food Bank and Community Hub.
The organization posted photos of empty shelves on the social media and Keim says those photos are not an exaggeration.
“Generally our shelves stay pretty full because we don't have that much space. Those shelves that were posted-- that is the still the state of them,” added Keim.
Some of the biggest things that the food bank is in need of include:
- Cash donations
- Diapers: Size 1 & 5
- Baby wipes
- Canned meat: Fish, ham, turkey etc.
- Peanut butter
- Bulk flour
- Bulk sugar
- Canned fruit and vegetables
- Laundry Soap
The spring and summer months are often difficult for local food banks as donations tend to increase during the holiday months over the fall and winter.
“We hit this lull that happens probably about mid-January that carries through until probably late-May to early-June. Then a lot of times as the schools or sport programs are starting up for the summer, they do some drives for us which helps a little bit but it's definitely the slowest time of the year," explained Keim.
People are welcome to bring donations to the Blackfalds Food Bank and Community Hub 5014 Waghorn Street in Blackfalds at any time.
“If no one is here, there are two donation bins right out our front door that they can be deposited in and those are picked up daily,” he added.