Saskatoon Transit & Food Bank team up to help hungry
The Saskatoon Food Bank and Learning Centre together with Saskatoon Transit are working to deliver emergency food hampers to those who need it most. In the wake of the COVID-19 crisis, twice a week, on Monday and Wednesday, Access Transit will deliver food hampers to people experiencing a variety of urgent and complex circumstances that interfere with their access to emergency food.
“With excess capacity at Access Transit during this time, we felt we could help,” says Tracey Loewen, Access Transit Manager. Loewen says her team reached out to Deborah Hamp, Director of Operations and Engagement with the Saskatoon Food Bank and Learning Centre. “Following a few conversations about what would be required, it all came together quickly.”
The impact of COVID-19, Hamp says, highlights the stark realities imposed by poverty. “The impact of COVID-19 and the uncertainties that lie ahead really demonstrate how quickly things can change for anyone.” Hamp adds when complex circumstances are thrown into the mix, they make people even more vulnerable to being unable to access a basic human need. “The bottom line is that people need food to survive, and due to this extraordinary crisis, that need is going to increase,” she says. “We are happy to welcome Access Transit to a growing list of companies that are stepping in to get the job done for the most at-risk members of communities in Saskatoon.”
Access Transit will help with deliveries as long as needed using the extra service time it has available. Three conditions must be met:
- driver safety is not compromised
- essential service to Access Transit customers is not affected
- additional resources will not be required
“Helping with these food deliveries will not jeopardize the service we continue to provide to the public nor will we put our staff at any risk,” Loewen stresses. “Our operators will follow all safety protocols, keep their vehicles clean, and of course, practice appropriate physical distancing.”
The emergency food hampers will be made at the Saskatoon Food Bank and Learning Centre and Access Transit will pick them up to take them wherever they need to go.