The Blackfalds Food Bank has been expanding and adapting to change since the beginning of the pandemic. Shortly after the pandemic began, the organizations began to offer a school lunch program which is operating today.
“That program really grew throughout the first year of the pandemic, and our Food Bank has staff and volunteers that are so dedicated they've been able to fundraise and continue the lunch box program. It takes place every Monday families can stop by, they just have to pre-book a basket and they get a basket of breakfast and lunch supplies,” said Executive Director of the Blackfalds FCSS, Sue Bornn.
The Food Bank has recently been rebranded and moved to a new facility which will also be expanding their opportunities. Already, the organization is offering more than just food to the community.
“It's been rebranded as the Beyond Food Community Hub. There is unbelievable things taking place there recently. At the beginning of this year, there was a move to a new facility. They have big plans. They've got some sponsorship dollars from MEGlobal. They're going to be building a community kitchen. They've also got a grad dress up program right now, where if there's anyone in the community that is needing a grad dress, they can connect with our Beyond Food Community Hub,” said Bornn.
The Beyond Food Community Hub is also working with local grocers to provide a fresh fruit and vegetables recycling program offered at reduced prices.
“There is an affordable market with local growers and producers. They have fresh vegetables and fruit available at a fraction of the cost of grocery store prices. We've got great support from our grocery stores in town that do help with that program as well. It's something that's just brand new. I think it's been taking place since the end of February,” added Bornn.
Bornn is convinced the Beyond Food Community Hub will continue to grow as they determine how to make the best use of their new space.
“Stay tuned because there's going to be more good things once they have their kitchen construction underway and built. There's hopes for future thrift store and there is lots of opportunity there,” she added.
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