Jan 12, 2022

Year in Review: Community Resilience in 2021

staff volunteers standing around table in production hall

If we could sum up 2021—or, more accurately, the strength with which our communities faced the many hardships of 2021—in one word, it would be resilience. Living through nearly two years of the coronavirus pandemic has meant nearly two years of readjusting and reprioritizing our goals in response to the increasingly urgent need for food among populations hardest hit by recurrent waves of new variants and all-time-high case counts.

Despite the ongoing challenges posed by COVID-19, Daily Bread Food Bank remains committed to ensuring safe and uninterrupted food delivery to Torontonians experiencing food insecurity. Our collective determination to fulfill this promise has guided the way toward making a lasting impact.

Uniting under a single vision to end hunger in our city, with the support of our generous donors, volunteers and supporters, we:

  • distributed nearly 17 million pounds of nourishing food to thousands of families and individuals across the city (a 30% increase since last year)
  • opened 22 new food programs (compared to 1-2 programs before the pandemic)
  • cooked and served 101,400 meals made with love from the Daily Bread kitchen
  • delivered over 10,000 meals to isolation programs in partnership with Red Cross
  • welcomed 633 new volunteers, who—alongside our existing squad of incredible volunteers—collectively logged nearly 489,000 hours and sorted almost 3.5 million pounds of food

And since our Who’s Hungry 2021 report released the harrowing statistic of nearly 1.45 million food bank visits last year, we have been more determined than ever to bring our four advocacy priorities to fruition:

  • Tackling deep poverty: We collected 15,031 petition signatures calling for Ontario to reduce poverty by 50% by the year 2030.
  • Affordable housing: Daily Bread supporters sent 441 letters to city councillors, advocating for affordable housing policies.
  • Economic and social resiliency: We organized 12 meetings with elected representatives—including Canada’s Prime Minister and Ontario’s Minister of Child, Community and Social Services.
  • Food access: 1,231 Daily Bread supporters attended Research & Advocacy presentations to learn about the root causes of food insecurity and policy solutions.

From all of the hardworking staff and volunteers across our networks, to those tirelessly working on the frontlines of the pandemic, to policymakers with the power to enact tangible change, to communities beyond the GTA—we are stronger together. As we continue the work, we remain more thankful than ever for your support in fulfilling our mission to eliminate food insecurity and advocate for solutions to end poverty.

Are you looking to get involved in 2022? From volunteering to donating to advocating for equitable policies, the opportunities to create meaningful change are endless.

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