The Rural Cupboard Food Bank is operated solely by volunteers who have dedicated their time and efforts to helping people in need. Many of our friends and neighbours struggle to put food on the table each day. Some have to choose between buying food and paying the rent. The Rural Cupboard Food Bank was established in response to this need in 2003 by Parvin Halabecki, who saw the problem and acted on it. Rural residents are unable to use the food banks in the City of Thunder Bay, so Parvin started one for rural area residents. The food bank started out in the basement of the Redeemer Lutheran Church in the village of Kakabeka Falls, but we eventually outgrew our space and partnered with the Township of Conmee for a new warehouse.
The Food Bank began by giving out 4 or 5 hampers each month. Today, the Food Bank distributes between 70 and 100 hampers of food a month, containing enough food for one week, and with extras for school lunches and infant needs. We operate through the generosity of people who give freely of their time and money to help us accomplish our goals.
The Rural Cupboard Food Bank serves rural residents in a catchment area that stretches from the US Border in the south, to Pass Lake in the northeast, and west to Upsala. Clients come from the Townships of Conmee, Gillies, and O'Connor and the Municipalities of Neebing, Oliver Paipoonge and Shuniah. We also serve clients in the unincorporated areas surrounding the City of Thunder Bay. You must live outside of the City of Thunder Bay to qualify to use the Rural Cupboard Food Bank.
We believe that all clients should be treated with dignity and respect. Clients are expected to provide basic information only including proof of rural residence. We do not request financial information or that they prove their "need" for our services.