When you see people lining up at a food bank, do you ever wonder what their lives are like, what challenges they are facing, and how you can make things better?
How many pairs of socks do they own? What was for dinner last night? Do they think their kids will go to university?
It is the answers to these kinds of questions that make the impacts of poverty more real.
At Daily Bread Food Bank, our Research & Advocacy team has long made these sorts of measures a central part of our work. That is why we helped to develop the Ontario Deprivation Index as a poverty metric back in 2007.
Now we are taking things a step further and launching Click/Hear, a new platform to gather insights about food bank clients’ daily lives more regularly. Each month, Click/Hear will send a short survey to clients who have signed up for the program, and then use their responses to support our advocacy and policy work. We developed this promising pilot program with senior volunteers from a few public polling firms and are excited to watch it grow.
Click/Hear builds on two of our core values. It ensures our work is evidence-based and that we are leveraging client input in all that we do, using a Rights-Based Approach to fight food insecurity. The low-barrier nature of this program enables clients to easily become partners in our research and therefore active participants in social change.
Click/Hear‘s monthly client surveys will supplement and build upon the more in-depth ones performed for the annual Who’s Hungry report. Every year, after the Who’s Hungry questionnaires, clients volunteer to tell us more. This year, 282 respondents told us they want to participate.
So, Click/Hear is asking.
The first Click/Hear query will be about how clients managed during the summer heat wave. In the coming months, we will ask about getting around on public transit, the last time they saw a dentist, social assistance rates, experiences with landlords, winter clothing and more. Other ideas are still being generated and will be updated on an ongoing basis.
Watch for the first results, coming soon here.
And if you’re a food bank client, you can sign up to be part of Click/Hear here.