Frequently Asked Questions

Here’s how it works using milk as an example.

Fresh milk is a much needed item at the food banks.

To purchase 8,300 litres of milk it would cost approximately $8,300.00 every month plus the cost to ship and receive this needed product from the source to the local food banks. Our Food Recovery operation spent time and funds establishing partnerships instead of purchases. Now each month The Dairy Farmers of Ontario, The Dairy Transportation Association and Dairy Processors work together to donate 8,300 litres of milk to Hamilton Food Share. In turn Hamilton Food Share distributes milk to emergency food programs throughout the city. Funds used to open this gateway continue to produce donated supplies on an ongoing basis. On average throughout the year, for every dollar we expend on transportation, storage and distribution we can raise $5 worth of food. Each month we spend approximately $650.00 to receive, store and distribute this donation.

Donations from our local community partners such as corporations, individuals, groups and organizations fund 69% of our food recovery operation. Sources of the balance of our funding (31%) come from additional fundraising through member agencies, community events and foundations. As a registered charity all financial contributions are tax deductible. Hamilton Food Share is not a United Way Agency.

83% comes from the food industry, such as food manufacturers, retailers, wholesalers and farmers.

17% comes from our local community food drives and food purchases.

Hamilton Food Share helps to stock publicly-accessible food banks and hot meal programs for independent not-for-profit organizations including: Good Shepherd, Mission Services, Living Rock, Neighbour-to-Neighbour, St Matthews House, Stoney Creek Community Food Bank, The Salvation Army, Welcome Inn, Wesley Urban, the Native Women’s Centre, De Mazonod Door at St. Patrick’s Church and Niwassa.

We encourage people in need to visit their closest food bank. Most agencies allow people to come once a month for 3 days worth of emergency food groceries. With cut backs to social service and disability benefits people are struggling to feed their families for longer periods beyond the three days. People who need additional food can visit more than one agency.

In our community currently there are 12,619 people accessing food banks every month and 4,635 are children (38%). Others that use emergency food services include disabled people, senior citizens, and many people who have lost their jobs and found other employment at minimum wage.

Increasing rents and utility bills are adding more pressure on families who struggle each month with “paying the rent or feeding the kids.” These are our neighbours, relatives and friends who have reached a point where they have little choice but to turn to an emergency food program for help.