Moncton’s Food Depot is looking for volunteers as it moves ahead with plans for a new centralized food centre, which the organization hopes will be open in May.
The Moncton Food Depot purchased the old gym that used to be part of CFB Moncton to consolidate several Moncton food banks in one place, instead of having them spread across different neighbourhoods.
It will continue to run its warehouse which supplies food to more than 20 food banks across Southeastern New Brunswick.
Chantal Senecal is the executive director of the Moncton Food Depot. She says the new facility is based on community food centres in Toronto, Calgary and Fredericton.
“It’s just offering more programs, more education, more support really taking the time to see what the individual situation is,” said Senecal.
“It’s not just for people who are on assistance or who are homeless it’s really for the working poor, families that are struggling, they can get assistance as well.”
Senecal says there will be many different programs included such as a community kitchen and a community garden.
Moncton Food Depot purchased the building for $250,000 with one extra dollar thrown in for a 25 year lease on the land.
Work to convert the old military building is just getting underway.
“They are really just at the beginning stages of doing all the drawings getting the building permits and just getting started right away so they know we’re kind of on a time crunch. We want to try and start transitioning people [in] early May into the food center and then kind of have an official opening sometime in the summer.”
The centre distributes over 2-million pounds of food each year to food banks, soup kitchens, shelters and breakfast programs.