Loaves and Fishes
In 2010, the Loaves and Fishes food bank distributed nearly $800,000 worth of food on an annual basis through 6 depots in the city of Nanaimo where clients could pick up a pre-made bag of food on a weekly basis. In 2011, they began looking at ways to innovate. In September 2012, they launched a new program where Loaves and Fishes picked up all food being disposed of from local retailers. This food is then sorted by volunteers to ensure that only quality food is provided to people. Food that is not of a suitable quality is provided to local farmers to feed livestock. To fund this program, Loaves and Fishes stopped purchasing $10,000 a month worth of milk and used the money to pay additional drivers and warehouse staff. Funds were also diverted to purchase new freezers, coolers, and forklifts. The results have been remarkable. By 2017, $3.1 million worth of food was being made available to the community by Loaves and Fishes that now operates 13 depots in the city where between 3000 and 3500 clients each month can choose the food they would like. Currently, every dollar they spend now results in $5.98 worth of food being distributed.