Food for Thought Blog

Emergency Hamper Programs Lend Helping Hand

July 4th, 2019Awareness

Food is a basic human right but 1 in 20 households in Waterloo Region currently lack steady access to the nutritious food needed to live a healthy life. The reality is hunger can happen to anyone; anywhere at any time and finances don’t always meet the basic needs.

Every year in Waterloo Region, more than 34,000 men, women and children access food assistance programs.

There are more than 100+ community programs and agency partners – as part of the Community Food Assistance Network – that provide a variety of services and support, such as: community centres and outreach, community meals, residential services and emergency hampers.

Waterloo Region is home to 36 emergency food hamper programs, including the House of Friendship Emergency Hamper program, the Salvation Army, Wilmot Family Resources Centre and Wellesley Food Cupboard, just to name a few. These programs offer access to critical services and support and help the men, women and children in our community struggling to access food.

An important part of the what we do at The Food Bank of Waterloo Region is working with community programs and agency partners to acquire and distribute much needed food to those in need. To help community members better understand this work, we thought we would share more about how the Emergency Hamper program provides support to those struggling to access food.

What is an Emergency Hamper?

An emergency food hamper provides a balanced selection of fresh, frozen and non-perishable food items for your entire family. Each emergency food hamper is estimated to last about 3 to 4 days.

There are a variety of emergency food hamper programs available throughout Waterloo Region. If you are in need, please click here to find the program closest to you.

How to Access an Emergency Food Hamper?

Accessing emergency food hampers may vary depending on the program and location. Some emergency food hampers can be accessed once a month.

The Food Assistance Network Map will help you identify and locate an emergency food hamper program in your neighbourhood. To learn more about accessing an emergency food hamper, click here or call 519.743.5576.

What Type of Food is Included in a Food Hamper?

Emergency hampers are a mixture of fresh and non-perishable food items. They may include fresh fruit and vegetables, eggs and milk as well as frozen and non-perishable items. Some programs do provide personal care items such as toothpaste and shampoo and if available, will offer pet food as well.

If you are in need of food assistance, please click here or call: 519.743.5576.