Home > Getting missional > A week in their kitchen: going into our first day living off an emergency hamper

A week in their kitchen: going into our first day living off an emergency hamper

Today my baby, my four year old son and I will be heading to the Calgary food bank to get our emergency food hamper that we are to live off of for 1 week.  We don’t know what food we’ll be getting, all we know is that whatever we get, that’s what we’ll be eating.  We are not permitted to buy anything to eat or drink or receive food from friends till the 1 week is up.

When I saw this opportunity offered by the Calgary food bank on my twitter feed, I immediately responded with excitement.  Since moving to Calgary 5 years ago, I have been shocked at the “working poor” and “working homeless” situation here.   I have been looking for opportunities that will help me understand what many live with as a reality.  I’m tired of living in my comfortable, suburban bubble.  Even though finances can be tight in our family, I know that for many Calgarians, finances are even tighter.

Here’s some stats I read that shows our reality in Calgary:

  • client visits have increased 57% since the recession
  • 32% of hamper requests were made by people with a job
  • 41% of clients are children!
  • 15,604 Hampers for the homeless were distributed to Calgarians living in inadequate housing
  • an average of 249 emergency food hampers are distributed DAILY

As a family, we have decided that we want to live beyond ourselves.  We want to be people who reach out to the needs of others and raise our boys to continue this into their adult years.  But it’s one thing to say we WANT to, and a completely different thing to actually do it.

You may wonder if I’m a little apprehensive, having a young baby and a preschool child.  Yes, I’ve had my concerns.   I have NO idea what we’ve gotten ourselves into.  All I know, is that for many (even those with young children like mine), THIS is a reality they face.  They worry beyond just a week how and what  they’ll be feeding their babies and children.   I know we aren’t going to starve, but I know that our wants will be starved – which I think is a really good thing.

Today we step out of our comfortable to begin a journey of discovery of others “uncomfortable”.

…..And big props to my hubby who’s willing to start this journey on his birthday today.   I wonder what the birthday dinner will look like?  I guess you’ll find out tomorrow…..

I’ll be blogging every day (even over the weekend) for the next 7 days.  Follow along the journey and lets discover together what needs abide in our own communities.

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Categories: Getting missional
  1. Charlene Z
    May 30, 2011 at 3:08 pm

    Connie, you & your family are amazing!! We are praying for you as you walk this road for the coming week. Praying that through this God would speak loud & clear. That your eyes & ears would be open to what the Holy Spirit has to say. Looking forward to hearing about the birthday dinner too!! Blessings to you & your awesome family!!

  2. May 30, 2011 at 6:24 pm

    One wonderful blessing I have seen thrughout the last almost 64 years — I have never seen the righteous forsaken and their children begging for bread: God alway provides even as I was sharing with my friends at the Romanian church yesterday: -When we grew up in Hungary – until I was 9 years old — six days a week Monday to Saturday – my lunch was a piece of bread with pork lard spread on it — This thing about Kosher food — God wasn’t looking at the food we were eating — He was looking at the soul of small 9 year old boy that needed saving. Some of the people in the congregation were laughing when I menitoned this — they came from poverty stricken Romania — and they informed me that here in Canada they still like eating – Pork lard sandwitches — I thought good for you guys — because they will be albe to survive in hard times. Try it — a piece of bread with pork lard and maybe a little bit of salt (you can also do it with baccon fat. — My relatives who lived through 2 world wars — several of them lived into their late 80s and early to mid 90s — You bless the food and God blessed it. Amen!

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