Coming To A Doorstep Near You
The Fall can be a stressful time of year for many, from worrying about back-to-school expenses to the overall increases in the cost of living. At the Calgary Food Bank, we continue to experience high demand with many finding they need emergency food support as they continue to recover from the economic downturn. We are finding individuals that are working are not able to stretch their paychecks and are therefore turning to us in higher numbers.
Have you ever wondered how the City-Wide Food Drive works?
For one week every September over 8,000 volunteers deliver hundreds of thousands of donation bags to the front doors of homes across the city. Generous Calgarians, like you, then fill those bags with healthy, nutritional, and much needed non-perishable food and leave the bag on your driveway. Those same volunteers then pick up your donations and bring them back to the Food Bank to be sorted and distributed to Calgarians. We are incredibly grateful for the volunteers that come together each year for the City-Wide Food Drive. We could not do it without you!
Food Drive Details
- Volunteers deliver food drive bags to neighbourhoods across Calgary
- If you choose to participate, please fill the bag with non-perishable food items.
- Place your donation bag on your doorstep, or in a visible place from the street.
- Volunteers will pick-up your bag.
- If your bag is missed, a phone number is provided to call to arrange a pickup.
- Only bagged items will be collected. We will not ring your doorbell or solicit donations.
Did You Know?
In 2008, Calgary held the Guinness Book of World Records status for the ‘largest food drive in 24 hours – single location’ with a total 511,102 pounds of food. The title was taken in 2011 and is currently being held by the North Carolina School of Science & Mathematics in Durham, NC, USA with 559,885 pounds. We tried again in 2014 for the food drive’s 10th anniversary and collected 489,570 pounds of food.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do I participate?
Bags will be delivered to single-family homes across the City of Calgary from September 18 to 22. Watch for your bag and fill it with non-perishable food items. Place the bag in a visible location on your front step or front walk on Saturday, September 23 by 10 am. A volunteer will pick up your bag on Saturday, September 23 , between 10 am and 1 pm.
How do I volunteer?
Registration for volunteering can be done here
Can I donate funds instead of food?
Yes! Should you wish to make an online donation towards the City-Wide Food Drive, you can click “Donate” in the menu which will take you to our online donation form. If you wish to mail a cheque, they can be made out to Calgary Food Bank and mailed to 5000 11 St SE, Calgary AB, T2H 2Y5. Or you can donate by scanning the QR code that is on the back of the door hanger that was delivered with your bag.
Please note, we use Canada Helps to facilitate our online donations. Once your donation is made you will automatically receive a receipt to your email from Canada Helps.
What time will my bag be picked up?
Place the bag in a visible location on your front step or front walk on Saturday, September 23 by 10 am. A volunteer will pick up your bag between 10 am and 1 pm. Only bagged items will be collected.
*Volunteers will not ring your doorbell or solicit donations.
My bag wasn’t picked up. What should I do?
Due to the large scale of the Food Drive, donations are occasionally missed – but that doesn’t mean that we don’t need or want your donation! If your bag is missed, please call or text your address to 587-316-1623 between 1 pm and 4 pm on Saturday, September 23. Leave your bag out, and a volunteer will pick your bag up in the afternoon.
*Please note the phone line will be closed at 4pm.
I didn’t receive a Food Drive bag. Can I still participate?
Absolutely! If you live in an apartment, condominium or multifamily home and don’t receive a Food Drive bag you can still participate in the City-Wide Food Drive. You can fill any shopping bag or a box and bring it to the Calgary Food Bank at 5000 11 St SE between 10am and 5pm on Saturday, September 23.
What can I put in the bag?
Please put non-perishable foods such as canned vegetables, canned fruit, canned meat, jars of baby food, etc. Please do not donate food items that may spoil such as fresh meats or fresh produce as it may be a few days before your donation is sorted and the food will not be able to be used. Visit our wish list to see our most needed items.
The phone line was closed when I called. Now what can I do?
The call centre is open until 4 pm, but you may not have noticed that your bag wasn’t picked up until after 4 pm. Due to the large scale of the Food Drive, donations are occasionally missed – but that doesn’t mean that we don’t need or want your donation! If you are able to, please take your donation to the Calgary Food Bank donation bin at your local grocery store and it will be picked up by the Calgary Food Bank.
What if I received a bag but don't want to participate?
We apologize for any inconvenience that the donation bag may have caused. The bag is biodegradable and can be put into your black bin.