Charlottetown food bank expanding

·1 min read
The new space has more room for clients and for volunteers, says Mike MacDonald. (Sheehan Desjardins/CBC - image credit)
The new space has more room for clients and for volunteers, says Mike MacDonald. (Sheehan Desjardins/CBC - image credit)

The Upper Room Hospitality Ministry in Charlottetown has taken over a new space to enable it to help more people at once, given pandemic restrictions.

Food bank executive director Mike MacDonald said the space they had been working out of was cramped, and they had to limit the number of people they allowed in the building. That sometimes left people waiting outside.

"It's certainly not something that we want to have happen," said MacDonald.

"It's hard for people to come see us and it's hard for people to ask for help. And we want to make sure that we're treating people with dignity, and people are comfortable coming to our food bank and asking for help."

Food bank usage has been up 10 per cent during the pandemic, he said.

The new space, which will be used for distribution to clients, is 10,000 square feet, and right across the street from the current location, at 34 Belmont St. That location, with its refrigeration and shelving, will continue to be used for food storage.

Sheehan Desjardins/CBC
Sheehan Desjardins/CBC

The new building will also allow more volunteers to be working at the same time. That had been limited to four.

The expansion would not have been possible without the generous support of the community over the last couple of years, said MacDonald.

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