A message from our Executive Director...
December is here and we are approaching the end of another year. For most of us this is a time to celebrate with friends and family. It is a busy time with plenty of joy to go around. It does bring a bit of stress decorating, baking, and cooking. I hope that the good times outweigh those stresses in your life.
It has been a year where we have read many headlines about inflation, food insecurity, and housing issues. Not surprisingly, most food banks are very busy and setting new records. As Ontarians and Canadians, we are proud that we have our social safety nets. Changes are required to help our most vulnerable neighbours. Our governments need to make those changes, collectively we will need to remind them that we are a kind and caring society, and these supports need to be increased to meet the cost of living. This alone could help approximately 40% of our clients to be able to go to grocery stores and purchase their own food, reducing the stress we feel.
We are immensely proud to have received Top 10 Canadian Food Bank for the third year in a row and second consecutive Top 10 Canadian Impact Charity awards from Charity Intelligence. Our staff have been working hard to control cost, improve efficiencies and our 115 plus volunteers have been instrumental in making these happen. Our hard work and dedication to our community is our only focus, the awards are confirmation that we are doing it the right way.
We have been approved by Revenue Canada as a charity tax clinic for next year. We are in the process of setting up our internal processes and will be recruiting for volunteer tax preparers soon. Completing your income taxes each year is important, but for lower income earners, it is crucial for receiving benefits.
I continue to feel extremely lucky that I get to lead Partners in Mission Food Bank. Helping our neighbours in such a great and generous community. Thank you for your help and support.
Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and wishing you all the best in the New Year!
What have we been up to recently...
Oct 1 – Stuff the Bus – 93.5 Country, with Hogan Bus Lines had their annual Stuff the Bus at Metro Gardiners Road, collecting 1296 lbs of food and over $7000 (including the Metro matching)
Oct. 2 – Comicon – food drive collected 240 lbs.
Oct. 4 – Desjardins Insurance Agents – donated $12,500 with company matching
Oct 3 – Gaels Tackle Hunger: the football team collected at Metro Barrie Street a total of 1130 lbs of food and $1115.30 (including Metro matching). At the game another 250 lbs was collected and Executive Director Dan Irwin started the game with the coin toss.
Oct 12 – Bayridge Secondary School: Staff and Students collected an amazing 3325 lbs of food for PIMFB!
Oct 14 – World Egg Day: So far this year, we have provided over 13,650 dozen eggs to our clients!
Oct 13-15 – Greater Kingston AAA Hockey: tournament food drive collected 845 lbs of food.
Oct 16 Holy Cross Secondary School: wrapped up their Thanksgiving Food Drive, collecting 800 lbs of food.
Oct 29 – Amy’s Trick of Eat: Amy was a volunteer with us for 12 years who we lost in 2022. Her family is continuing her neghbourhood food drive, collecting 945 lbs of food and $3077.80..
Oct. 28 & 31 Wilson Manor: Haunted House collected 295 lbs of food and $177.75
Nov. 1: LaSalle SS food drive, 452 lbs, $107.80
Nov. 3, 4, 10, 17, 18 & 24: Frontenacs food drive at their home games
Nov. 14: Kinsmen TV Super Bingo came into donate $3000.
Nov. 15: Leon’s Center staff came into sort food
Nov. 16: Kingston Mazda donated $5000 in honour of our volunteer Maverick, who is a Queen’s student.
Nov. 15: LobsterFest 2022 donated $2500
Nov 18: 2023 Nighttime Santa Parade: Holy Cross volunteers 1362lbs of food and $1615
Nov. 22: OPSEU local 429 donated $500
Nov.28: Wilkens Health & Safety in to sort food
Nov. 28: CUPE local 7548 donated $1000
Nov. 28: United Steel Workers local 343 donated $1000
Nov. 28: Old Farm Fine Foods donated $820
Nov. 29: RBC Dominion Securities volunteers in to sort food and build orders
The Trust Factor: A Practical Guide for Researching Charities
by Kelsey Janz for Charitable Impact
You’re ready to take action for a cause you believe in. Now how do you decide which charity to rally behind?
Discovering a charitable cause that resonates with your values and sparks your innate desire to give back is a beautiful thing. But as you set out to translate that passion into action, you’ll quickly discover a multitude of Canadian charities dedicated to championing your chosen cause.
So, the inevitable question arises: how do you choose? How can you pinpoint the organizations that reflect your vision for change? And how can you ensure your contributions reach trustworthy and impactful hands?
While there’s no one-size-fits-all solution, investing time in researching and evaluating these charities is a piece of the puzzle. This checklist equips donors with quick tips and resources to make an informed decision—one that aligns with your charitable vision and magnifies the impact of your giving.
1. Verify their registration
To become a registered charity, an organization must apply to the Canada Revenue Agency and prove their operations are exclusively charitable at law. Thus, confirming registration is an important first step to ensure your donations are directed to legitimate organizations.
Another significant advantage—registered charities can issue tax receipts, while nonprofit organizations cannot.
Use Charitable Impact’s search tool to confirm whether an organization is indeed a registered charity or another type of qualified donee. Any and all Canadian registered charities are regularly updated, allowing you to ensure the organization is legitimate.
2. Check their track record
Charities are legally required to file a Registered Charity Information Return (T3010) to the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA), offering a wealth of information for the public about charities and their finances.
The T3010s disclose financial information including revenue, expenditures, new and ongoing programs, fundraising activities, executive compensation, fiscal year-end information, and more. You can access the T3010 return for all 86,000+ Canadian registered charities on the CRA website.
Charity Intelligence evaluates over 800 charities using a 5-star rating system. They analyze factors like results reporting, financial transparency, funding needs, efficiency in spending, and social impact. While not exhaustive, Charity Intelligence serves as a solid starting point for your research, if they have a report on the charity that interests you.
3. Review their website
Take a deep dive into the charity’s official website. Look for information about their impact, the areas they support, and any blog posts, videos, or podcasts they may have. Reading their annual report can also provide valuable insights into their operations and achievements.
4. Subscribe to their email list
Becoming a part of a charity’s email community opens the door to regular updates on their latest activities, initiatives, and achievements. This can help you gain insight into their ongoing work and how they are using donations to make an impact.
You’ll also be able to determine if their content and narratives align with your values and beliefs. In essence, subscribing to a charity’s email list is a way to receive a continuous stream of information that will help you make an informed decision.
5. Follow them on social media
Stay in the loop with the charity’s daily work by following their social media accounts, typically easy to find on a charity’s website. Platforms like Instagram and Facebook offer glimpses into their day-to-day activities and how they engage with their community.
You might even stumble upon connections who’ve lent their support or voiced their experience with the charity, who you can communicate with directly for more information or feedback.
6. Reach out to your network
It’s one thing to read about a charity’s work, and it’s another to hear genuine stories from people who’ve seen it in action. Your inner circle can be your most trusted advisors by providing personal anecdotes that paint a vivid picture of the charity’s impact.
Take a moment to connect with the folks in your network who have hands-on experience with the charity you’re exploring. Whether they’ve contributed by volunteering, donating, or are simply familiar with the charity and/or the people within it, their insights can be incredibly valuable.
7. Give them a call
A real, direct conversation can speak volumes. Pick up the phone, call the charity, and request to speak with someone who can address your queries. If the appropriate person is not immediately available, they should return your call within a reasonable amount of time. Gauge their response and the confidence in their answers to determine your level of comfort and trust.
Hands-on involvement provides an intimate understanding of the charity’s work, a chance to meet the individuals behind the cause, and gives you direct access to ask those burning questions. It’s a first-hand experience that will provide you with a deeper understanding of the charity’s mission and operations.
Research is an important layer of the decision-making process, but just a piece of the puzzle. Alongside these practical resources, it’s important to engage in self-reflection. Consider your personal charitable giving goals, motivations, and passions—these are the driving forces that will steer you toward creating a meaningful impact.
Feed Ontario Road Show in Kingston
December 5th we had Feed Ontario visit with their Hunger Report Road Show, providing us with the most recent Hunger Report. During this meeting we checked out a great online tool Fork in the Road. We highly recommend it. Here is the link:
Our most needed items...
One of the biggest questions we get asked is, "What should I donate?". These are suggestions for our most needed items:
- Money (your dollars contribute to higher purchasing power)
- Canned meat & fish
- Peanut butter, jam
- Stews, canned tomatoes
- Baby food, formula, diapers
- Pasta, pasta sauce
- 100% Fruit Juice
Many Kingston and area grocery stores have a food collection barrel at store fronts that we pick up weekly:
- Bearance's Grocery - 115 Livingstone Avenue
- Food Basics - 33 Barrack Street
- Food Basics - 1225 Princess Street
- Food Basics - Highway 15 Riverview Shopping Centre
- Foodland - 3 Manitou Crescent, Amherstview
- Fresh Co. - 2327 Princess Street
- Giant Tiger - 656 Gardiner's Road Riocan Centre
- Loblaw's - 1048 Midland Avenue
- Metro - 460 Gardiner's Road Gardiner's Town Centre
- No Frills - Grant's - 1162 Division Street
- No Frills - Chris & Beth's - 1030 Coverdale Drive
- Valu-mart - Van Wart's Your Independent Grocer - 235 Gore Road
Donations may be brought to our warehouse, at 140 Hickson Avenue, Kingston during office hours:
Monday-Thursday 8:30 am-12 noon and 1 pm-4:30 pm
Fridays 8:30 am-12 noon and 1 pm-4 pm.
In the Spotlight
Here at Partners in Mission Food Bank, we have some of the best employees on our team — but in addition to their day jobs, they have a wide array of hobbies, talents, and interests that make them truly unique. This Q&A aims to introduce our readers to the wonderful members of the PIMFB family.
We're pleased to introduce our Driver/Warehouse worker, Mark Haynes...
Tell us a little bit about yourself...
My name is Mark Haynes and I’m 52 years old. I enjoyed working as a cook at St. Lawrence College for 20 years.
I’m good at remembering faces, so I often meet people around Kingston who I recognize as former students. They’re usually shocked that I remember them and thank me for the food I served them during their time at SLC!
Why does PIMFB’s mission resonate with you?
I take pleasure in helping people and I strive to provide exceptional customer service. I really enjoy being a part of the community.
I like to put a smile on someone’s face, and improve their day if I can!
What is your favourite way to spend your time off?
I enjoy spending time outdoors with my family and taking my boys fishing and camping. Our golden retriever loves to come along and swim in the lake.
I also enjoy going to sports games and visiting local restaurants.
What was your favourite age growing up?
I don’t know…as I’m still growing up!!
My favourite age range was my mid 30’s because I got married and started a family.
We had a lot of fun raising our kids and we did lots of camping and exploring all over Ontario.
What is your favourite holiday tradition?
My favourite holiday is Thanksgiving. We visit our families, help cook delicious feasts, play games and just enjoy being together.
My favourite tradition is going to the Norwood Fair on Thanksgiving weekend.