As a registered charity, the Fort Saskatchewan Food Gatherers Society operates the Fort Saskatchewan Food Bank — which exists as a healthy staple of the community; providing fresh sustenance and dignity to individuals and families in moments of need, while challenging the archaic societal notion of “food poor” as a reality solely linked to poverty, homelessness, or weakness.
In recognizing that such factors as the absence of adequate educational and social supports, political, employment and family instability, rising housing and living costs, low minimum wage, and age and mobility issues often play a significant role in the affordability of even basic essential needs, it becomes clearly evident that not only is the status of “working poor” a harsh reality of our current economic climate, but that the looming threat of food insecurity is in fact a very real possibility for us all.
Offering more than just healthy meals of such fresh and non-perishable staple food items as fruits and vegetables, meat, bread and canned goods to local residents; more than healthy food snacks for hungry students to local schools; and more than Christmas meals, toys and goods to local families, children’s homes and shelters, what the Fort Saskatchewan Food Gatherers Society truly serves throughout the entire year is food for thought and a refreshment of individual and community spirit.
The Fort Saskatchewan Food Bank first began in response to a community need at Christmas; providing food and toys to families in need for a happier holiday. All of the goods and funds donated were used to fund the Christmas campaign, with only a minimal amount kept for the following year’s Christmas hamper start-up.
It soon became obvious, however, that community need extended beyond the holidays. In 1984, Father Floyd from Our Lady of Angels Catholic Church approached the Catholic Women’s League about organizing a food bank. The resulting simple program was operated by 4-5 volunteers helping out from all denominations, and was located in a small space donated by Our Lady of Angels Catholic Church.
A year later, representatives from the Food Bank group, the Christmas Hamper group, the Ministerial Association, and the City of Fort Saskatchewan met and formed the Fort Saskatchewan Food Gatherers Society. This group recognized a community need and thought they could use the annual Christmas Hamper Campaign to raise funds and provide food, not only for Christmas, but for the rest of the year. The excess food and funds from the Christmas Hamper Campaign was used to operate the Food Bank during the year, thus providing for those in need on a continual basis.
From 1992 to 2021, the Fort Saskatchewan Food Bank was located in a small building in the downtown area of Fort Saskatchewan. While quiet and easily accessible, it unfortunately did not allow for the operational expansion necessary to effectively serve the ever growing need for food, goods, and support throughout the community.
The Food Bank is now housed in the Fort Saskatchewan Nourishment Centre— an impressive, ultra-modern facility leased on the northern edge of the city, with enough space and potential to offer personal advancement classes and programs designed to feed not just hungry bodies, but hungry hearts and minds.
Monday, Wednesday, Friday:
9am — 2pm
Call us to book a time
The Fort Saskatchewan Food Gatherers Society is a registered charity which operates the Fort Saskatchewan Food Bank, Christmas Hamper Campaign, School Snack Program, and various other essential programs and services from the Fort Saskatchewan Nourishment Centre in order to serve a little hope and happiness to the people of Fort Saskatchewan in various times of need.