Posts Tagged ‘video’

Let’s talk about something….

November 11, 2011

We talk a lot about food, and often the topic of the social determinants of health comes up (here, here, and here).  Recently, a link to a nice video developed by the health unit in Sudbury showed up in my inbox.  It helps explain the basics of the social determinants of health and I’m here to share it with you today:

Is food a social determinant of health?  Yes.  An important one.  Did you ever think that food banks are wrapped up in the business of health care?  In a way they are.  You can think of us like paramedics if you’re feeling charitable.  We rush to the scene of crisis, deliver assistance and then move on.  Or perhaps, you can just think of us as good Samaritans who happen on a disaster.  We help as best we can and then maybe the situation improves, maybe it doesn’t.

But to extend the comparison a little further, are we doing enough about the cause of the disaster?  Sure, a little help gets people on their feet.  But who keeps knocking them down?  And what is the long-term consequence of getting pushed down by things like poverty, unemployment, bad housing, limited choices, and bad or no food?

Watch the video, give it some thought and talk to someone you know about it.  Talk to the people you’ve voted for, and who you’re going to vote for next election time.  It’s important for people like Ronald, Andrew, Maria and all the people that we serve.

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How?

September 20, 2011

One of the big questions we get is “how do I get a hamper?”

It’s a good question.  If you go to a hundred food programs across the country, you will likely have a hundred different experiences.  Each  place is different; there is no standard, but there are similarities.

A while ago, we managed to get our hands on a nice camera, and the staff here were kind enough to take on starring roles in our own re-enactment of getting up the courage to walk through our door, talk to a staff person and get a hamper.  Thanks to Nadir for the camera work, Melissa and Michelle for their acting skills and our volunteers for providing some background.

Take the example of Andrew, who Melissa blogged about last week.  This is likely pretty close to what he would have experienced when visiting our program.  On average we serve about 140 families and individuals each day we are open. Without the hard work of our volunteers and donors we couldn’t do it.

So, we’re obviously not going to win any Oscars, but we hope this video answers some of your questions.

Here are a few things to consider:

The lobby can often be very busy.  How would you feel having this conversation in front of a room of strangers?

Our hampers vary, sometimes a lot.  Is that box of food something you would want to share with your family? What foods do you wish we had that aren’t there?

In the video it’s winter.  How would you get to us if you didn’t have a car or bus fare?  We are here.  What if you lived here?  Kind of a long walk isn’t it?  I hope you have warm boots. Even in summer it’s not a treat.  When it’s really hot out, sometimes it’s worse.  Sunstroke, frostbite or hunger. It’s not an easy choice.

Stay tuned for some more stories from people who have used our program. As you read them, keep this video in the back of your mind.  Each one of them will have gone through this process, sometimes many times, over many years.