Have you heard of Mealshare? If not, this article will give you a great overview!
Mealshare, it’s our community partner for a number of reasons! We love what they are doing across Canada to help people in need. We love the restaurants working with them… They are all helping to make a difference in people’s lives.
Here is our interview with one of the kindest people we know, Breanne from Mealshare. Enjoy!
Tell us about Mealshare…
One million Canadians rely on food support programs each month. But, 8 million Canadians dine out every DAY. Mealshare sees this as an opportunity to turn these individuals dining out, into helping out.
Mealshare is a Canadian wide, new non-profit aimed at finding sustainable solutions to hunger. We do this by partnering with solution-focused charities, that pride themselves on providing higher level needs to their clients.
Mealshare works with restaurants and places our logo beside certain menu items. When a guest orders a Mealshare branded menu item, they receive their meal just like normal, AND someone in need receives one too! It’s a ‘buy one, give one‘ approach to dining out. We provide meals in each city through a local charity partner, as well as around the world through Save The Children. in Calgary we are proud to support the Drop In Centre.
How long have you been with Mealshare?
I have been with Mealshare for a little over a year now! Which is crazy to even think because it seems like I just started yesterday. I am really fortunate to have a job that I don’t consider as “work”.
I started with Mealshare as an intern last summer (2014), and knew this was something I wanted to be a part of. I was lucky enough to get the opportunity to stay on after my internship was over as the Calgary Community Leader and the rest is history.
Tell us about your experiences you’ve had while helping at the Drop-in Centre.
Each week we get to bring in staff from our partner restaurants to help prep and serve the Mealshare Items their restaurant is sharing through Mealshare. The first thing that comes to mind is that the Drop In Centre always goes above and beyond. From the moment you walk in, to the moment you leave, the staff and volunteers are continually smiling, greeting and making sure you are well attended too.
Dinner service runs smoothly and efficiently- serving nearly 1,000 warm and healthy meals every night! Each time I am there it never ceases to amaze me how speedy AND detailed the service is. Serving a plate to each client really reminds me of why I work with Mealshare- you get to see the impact the program has immediately. A meal can make a huge difference in someones life, and it’s nice to be reminded of that each week!
Lastly, the clients are friendly and love to chat amongst one another, and to the staff/volunteers.Together the clients and the staff form a community- it’s not a place where people go when they are lost, it’s a place where these individuals go to be found. It definitely is a positive, humbling experience.
What is one thing that stands out to you since you’ve been working at Mealshare?
The thing that stands out to me the most since I have been working with the team is how big an issue food security and malnourishment really is- even in our own community. It’s too easy to get caught up in stereotypical thinking around homeless people, and to just keep walking. But you can’t simply judge someone without ever meeting them. There are many reasons why people are in the position they are, and many of these factors are out of individuals control.
The best thing is, is that I know Mealshare is really making a difference. So many meals have been sponsored at our charity partners because of our wonderful restaurant partners, and the impact it has on the community is huge. It’s awesome to get to be part of that! I am really excited to see the growth we will have over the next year, especially since we have a goal of hitting one million meals by mid-2016.
What is your perspective on healthy food, and a healthy life?
Embodying a healthy lifestyle is key to feeling great and being productive! From my own experiences I know how important it is to keep up with a properly balanced diet. Coming from a family where both my sister and myself have digestive diseases, I realize the importance of a balanced life and caring for what I put into my body. Having access to healthy food is one of the first steps to living a healthy life- it is the source of energy, nutrition and well-being.
One of my favorite things about Calgary is the sheer amount of options we have in the food industry,
the locally sourced ingredients and the attention to detail the chefs put into making their dishes. It definitely allows people to dine out and still lead a healthy life.
Beyond food, I love to stay active! One of my favorite places in Calgary is YYC Cycle and I try to spin there 4 times a week.
Favourite place to dine-out at in Calgary currently. Hard question, right! :
Oh no- not fair! That changes on the daily. I have so many different places in the city that I go to for different dishes or when I’m in different moods. For the sake of the question though, I must say that Anju on 17th has always been my weakness- the food (and soju!) is just too good!
If you’d like to know even more about Mealshare, here are their social media links!
Website: Click here!
Facebook: Click here!