The Red Deer Food Bank is partnering with a local Rotary Club to create a new community kitchen.
This collaboration with Rotary Club of Red Deer East is the realization of a long-held dream for the Red Deer Food Bank. Getting a commercial kitchen to prepare, preserve, and provide food for the community would lead to stretching food budgets further — and showing clients how to do this as well.
“For over 10 years the Red Deer Food Bank has dreamed of developing a commercial kitchen,” says Mitch Thomson, executive-director of the Food Bank. “In the mid-2000s donations started coming in, and they have been set aside to contribute to this project…We see the opportunity to make good on this initiative.”
The Rotary Club of Red Deer East Community Kitchen will be located behind the administration offices of the Food Bank at Bay 10, 7429 – 49 Avenue.
The kitchen will be equipped to break-down bulk food for distribution in the hamper program, offer educational opportunities for adults and youth, and eventually, provide catering and food preparation services.
“The space will enable us to prepare food so it can be stretched and provided to more people in more ways,” Thomson added.
While more fundraising is needed with help from the Rotary Club of Red Deer East, the project is moving forward with municipal permitting.
“There’s a lot of potential,” added Thomson. This includes teaching about healthy eating, cultural palates, the best use of food, and canning and preserving. Aspects of traditional home economics, making your grocery budget go further, will be a central theme.
The Rotary Club of Red Deer East plan to hold their lunch meeting with a tour of the Food Bank, including the proposed kitchen space, on Tuesday, March 1, at noon.