OUTPUTS AND OUTCOMES
Emergency Food Hampers program provides food to low-income and food insecure Calgarians. Along with a hamper containing one week’s worth of food, clients are also provided with the option to participate in a survey to determine referrals to outside organizations based on their situation and needs. We connect clients with community resources that can address the underlying causes of food insecurity. While 29% of EFH clients were referred to Calgary Food Bank by partner organizations only 4% of clients were referred out to the network of partner organizations.
GOALS The goals for the program are to be within plus or minus 10%, in the coming fiscal year. The goal of number of hampers distributed in 2021/22 exceeded this target due to increased demand in our community. Goals for money saved and clients helped by agencies were exceeded. Our goal for referring to agencies was not met, however it increased significantly since last year with our new and client focused referral out process and it is expected to continue to increase as it becomes more convenient for the clients to access.
As COVID-19 pandemic reached its one-year mark early 2021, the EFH program continued to provide unlimited hampers to clients every 10 days. As the demand for EFH hampers has increased, we continued to modify our operations and increased the daily capacity up to 500 hampers/day. The purpose was to provide emergency assistance to all those affected by food crisis. In this fiscal year, the Calgary Food Bank distributed the largest number of hampers to the largest volume of clients in its history. Large hamper demands were in tandem with long wait times for clients to receive hampers. However, exceptions were accepted by staff and volunteers for those clients with emergency food need during the long waiting period. Additionally, the changes that had been introduced in response to COVID-19 related to the hamper distribution methods, we continued to follow the same outdoor drive-thru distribution model, followed by improved online booking platforms for clients’ convenience. In the last quarter, main location was being renovated and so all the distribution shifted to occur off the dock. Many roadblocks were identified during the transition process, but they were handled seamlessly by staff and volunteers. These adaptations have been successful in accommodating more clients’ requests.
To address the root causes of hunger and food insecurity, before COVID-19 pandemic, the Calgary Food Bank volunteers used to provide agency referral outs by going through a resource binder and selecting a relevant organization for the client. This was not a well-structured process. During COVID-19 pandemic, the referrals were not given out actively due to some agency closures. Hence, after one year of COVID-19 pandemic, Research and Client Services (R&CS) began to explore re-introducing agency referrals. The purpose was to have a structured process of providing community resources to clients based on their situation. Through closer partnership with agencies, the department was able to build back a better referral processes through improved training, data-informed referrals, improved information navigation and improved quality assurance measures. The new referral-out project was initiated on 4th April 2021 and a total of 2475 clients were referred-out in the fiscal year 2021-2022.
We are projecting for 2023/24, the number of Emergency Hampers distributed to be between 117,615 and 174,239.
We are projecting for 2023/24, the number of referrals to agencies to be between 5,500 and 7,400.
We are projecting for 2023/24 the money saved to be between $31,000,000 million and $36,000,000 million.
We are projecting for 2023/24 the clients helped by agencies to be between 27,000 and 30,000.
SHORT-TERM OUTCOMES Relieving food insecurity and providing support for clients who are living with food insecurity. Alleviate the stress of wondering where the next meal is coming from.
LONG-TERM OUTCOMES Creating a hunger-free community.