This post originally appeared in May 2016 when GoodFood Help had just launched. Over a year later, we’re thrilled to be hosting their second fundraiser on Thurs July 13–an epic party with incredible raffle prizes, DJ Steve Rock from Good Kids, Good Enough Live Karaoke and more! Get your tickets HERE.
Last year, Kate Salter was doing what most Torontonian urbanites do best–scrolling through Bunz Trading Zone. On this particular day, a post caught her eye. It was a request for groceries–specifically a banana. So struck by the the amount of Torontonians experiencing food insecurity, Kate posted an offer on the Bunz group wall to cook and share food to anyone in need, while keeping the trade completely confidential. Her post spurred a wave of requests and GoodFood Help was born. Together with co-founded Shannon Candido and a team of volunteers, GoodFood Help is a peer-to-peer initiative that aims to deliver healthful, nutritious parcels of food to Toronto residents who are experiencing instances of food insecurity.
(Image of Kate Salter, as originally seen on She Does the City)
There was a huge outpouring of support on Bunz and beyond when it first started and a year later, GoodFood Help is almost entirely self-funded. That’s why the Gladstone Hotel has stepped in to host their second fundraiser on Thurs July 13, 2017 (RSVP here!). The night will be hosted by Stephen Eyes and Kaleb Robertson, featuring DJ Steve Rock, Good Enough Live Karaoke, Raffle Prizes, cheap pints of Beau’s (all proceeds go to GoodFood Help) and more! We sat down with co-founder Kate Salter to learn more about this amazing initiative.
Everyone on the Gladstone loves using Bunz Trading Zone. Why do you think it’s such a useful outlet to help with food insecurity issues?
Bunz Trading Zone actually started with a request to trade for groceries. The founder needed a can of tomatoes to make a pasta sauce, but didn’t have the money to buy it. By using social media, and Bunz specifically, we have the opportunity to reach people who need the service but may not have accessed a food bank before. By meeting in a neutral place and offering a discreet service, we’re able to reach an entirely new audience.
Bunz is wonderful at connecting people and helping us overcome urban isolation.
Absolutely. Our clients have ranged from your typical student on a tight budget to a former executive of a well-known Toronto company. Food insecurity can strike you at anytime–it can happen when you get an unexpected vet bill, a missed paycheck, are in between contracts etc. I’ve experienced it–even when I was gainfully employed.
(Fresh produce from Good Food Help)
When GoodFood Help launched four weeks ago, it was instantly met with a huge demand. How are you keeping up with it all?
The recent press we’ve gotten has especially increased the demand and it’s been a challenge to meet the demand. We’re almost entirely self-funded right now and even with all the support, there is a deficiency of donations in relation to the huge need we’ve seen. To address it, we started a GoFundMe campaign and planted a garden (thanks to my former neighbour who was so inspired, she went to Canadian Tire and bought everything we needed to plant it). In the last week, the garden has reaped enough produce to feed salads to 15 people.
We’re really excited for the fundraiser! Through door sales/raffle prizes–how will the money raised help support GoodFood Help?
A majority of the funds will go directly back into food purchase. We’re also working on developing a sustainable donation flow and connecting further with the community. We’ve been amazed by the outpouring of support from the community. I’m in awe of the Gladstone for having your support with the launch. You guys are a cornerstone of our West End community, so having you behind us really means a lot!
THANK YOU KATE! Our pleasure!
We hope you’ll come out to the GoodFood Help’s Fundraiser to help this incredible cause AND have a blast. RSVP on the Facebook page here.