“It makes a difference.” Charmaine, a Stonegate resident and single mother of three, is referring to a box overflowing with fresh, locally grown fruits and vegetables. She is one of hundreds of recipients of Stonegate Community Health Centre's Good Food Box Holiday Drive. The Drive, now in its eighth season, provides a Good Food Box to community individuals and families struggling to put healthy food on the table.
Over the past seven years, thanks to generous donors, Stonegate Community Health Centre has been able to provide Good Food Boxes to neighbourhood individuals and families dealing with food insecurity and hunger. When the program began, 80 clients were referred to receive a Good Food Box. Last year the number grew to almost 300.
With close to 28% of families and 38% of children living below the poverty line in the Stonegate community, food security is a major concern. Compounding this is the long term redevelopment of Stonegate Plaza, which has left our community as a “food desert”, without walkable access to fresh healthy food. While Stonegate CHC provides resources including a mobile food market and organized bus trips to the grocery store, these measures don’t fill the gap. Many community members rely on the local food bank to meet their food needs.
This year, the Health Centre is once again relying on donations from businesses, partners and community residents to meet our goal of providing 300 boxes to those struggling to put healthy food on the table.
A donation of $18 buys a local family a large size Good Food Box brimming with fresh fruits and vegetables as a gift for the holidays. The Good Food Box is a non-profit fresh fruit and vegetable distribution system operated by FoodShare Toronto. Every Good Food Box is filled with top-quality fruits and vegetables from local farmers and the Ontario Food Terminal.
A $50 donation provides Good Food Boxes to 3 families in need.
A $100 donation provides Good Food Boxes to 6 families in need.
A $250 donation provides Good Food Boxes to 15 families in need.
A $500 donation provides Good Food Boxes to 30 families in need.
100% of donations go towards providing fresh healthy food for those in need. To make a donation, click on the donate now button below, or connect with Julia Graham, Community Food Program Coordinator, at 416.231.7070 ext. 229. Charitable tax receipts are available for every donation.