When a woman is living with abuse, or is doing her best to escape it, every day is full of stress and uncertainty. That’s why any woman receiving help from Women’s Resources is able to use a very special food cupboard open only to them and geared especially to their needs. “What makes me the most proud is that we are compassionate and non-judgemental,” says Facilities and Property Manager Sharon Benoit.
Clients make an appointment to meet with someone who will assess their situation, but does not look at their financial information. That makes the Women’s Resources Food Cupboard unique — the organization’s clients are already marginalized, Sharon says, so they shouldn’t be further judged. “We give them our best.”
Shannon McNeill, who manages the Food Cupboard, keeps track of any special needs clients might have, as well as their likes and dislikes. Whether they have special dietary needs or their kids won’t eat a certain brand of noodles, the Food Cupboard does its best to supply them with the things that suit them best rather than give them food they can’t use. If a particular item a client needs or has requested becomes available, Shannon contacts the client to let her know.
The Food Cupboard is small but thoughtfully stocked with non-perishable pantry staples as well as some fresh and frozen items. Much of the food comes from Kawartha Lakes Food Source, where Women’s Resources has been a partner since the Food Source started. “I can’t tell you how important that is,” Sharon says. “Without the Food Source we wouldn’t be able to provide the help we do.”
The Food Cupboard also provides important household and personal care items that might not be as readily available from the Food Source. That’s where donations are invaluable. If you want to help stock the Food Cupboard, things like shampoo, laundry soap, hand lotion, toothpaste, deodorant and any other items you have on your own bathroom shelves, in the laundry room or among your cleaning products are tremendously helpful. When you see them on sale, why not buy in bulk and send the extras along to the Food Cupboard?
The Food Cupboard and Kawartha Lakes Food Source are running a drive-thru food drive at Vicky’s Values, 50 Mary St. W. in Lindsay on Wednesday, Sept. 2 from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. It’s easy to help! Just put some personal care items or non-perishable food in a bag and bring it by.
By Nancy Payne