WHM Free Grocery Store
New to Welcome Hall Mission! We have transformed our Food Bank into a free grocery store for our customers. Imagine a configuration that looks more like a grocery store than a line-up for food.
Here are the benefits for our customers:
- Improved Customer service;
- Grocery carts to hold selections;
- Packers at check-out;
- A new snack bar;
- Open four days per week, with extended hours on Thursdays (Evening appointments are reserved for clients who are working or going to school);
- Food will still be distributed free of charge.
So, say good-bye to the Food Bank! Say hello to the Welcome Hall Mission Grocery Store!
Since 1985, Welcome Hall Mission’s Food Bank, now the WHM Free Grocery Store, has provided assistance to people who need it. Each week, over 2, 263 people benefit from food received at the grocery store. To serve them, we need to source almost one million kg per year. Food is provided to disadvantaged families to allow them to nourish themselves adequately. Customers receive the following goods, depending on what we receive from our different partners and food suppliers:
- Canned Foods
- Non-perishable Products
- Food Assistance
- Christmas Baskets and Toy Distribution
- School Supplies
- Income Tax Reports
- Community Information Sessions
- Opening Hours
In North America, it is possible to be hungry
Being hungry is unfortunately a reality in Montreal! Food assistance is an almost constant need because families have no other choice. Often, these families are going through hard times due to health or financial problems, or they are new immigrants who have not yet found work, or they are people having serious difficulties meeting their primary needs.
Living in prosperous North America, it is difficult to imagine people suffering from hunger.
“There were times when I didn’t even have a piece of bread. You know? It was really tough.”
Julie was on welfare, but her cheque left only a very small amount of money for food.
There are new opening hours for the WHM Free Grocery Store: see the table below.
Want to open a file? Visit the WHM Grocery Store during opening hours (see below). It is important that you bring the necessary documents! Click here for the list.
Warehouses and Refrigerated Trucks
Guarantee of fresh food
We own two food warehouses where we stock the food received from our different suppliers. Everything we receive is distributed free of charge to our clients: street youth, disadvantaged families, homeless people, and anyone else in need.
We also own refrigerated warehouses for optimum food management. These warehouses allow us to keep food fresh as long as possible.
The Mission’s Grocery Store is one of the few in Canada equipped with a real-time warehouse management system. This greatly facilitates our food management and allows us to organize distribution according to the “best before” dates marked on the products. The system also facilitates stock rotation in order to minimize food loss for our clients. Our truck fleet consists of four donated trucks, three of which are refrigerated. These trucks enable us pick up donations, make deliveries, and maintain refrigeration throughout the food handling process.
Sorting, Bagging and Food Handling
A pledge of quality
Our warehouses provide families and our four cafeterias with fruit, vegetables, and all the other products that we receive. To minimize waste, a preliminary sorting of everything received is made by participants (trainees) from our Education and Employability department and our volunteers. All the food is carefully sorted, separated into predetermined quantities, and re-packed.
Christmas Baskets and Toy Distribution
We want Christmas to be fun for everyone!
Every year we organize a special delivery of well-filled Christmas baskets, as well as a new and used toy distribution for children during the annual Noël Pour tous event. Registration for these distributions begin in October.
A Back-to-school with dignity for all
Registration begins in May for children of families we assist so they can receive school supplies. Thanks to our partners and donors, thousands of children receive back packs full of school supplies during our Rentrée la tête haute event.
Income Tax Returns
A free service
This service is provided for people who live below the poverty line. Government volunteers meet beneficiaries, by appointment, throughout the months of March and April. The service is provided three days per week (Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday), 30 minutes per appointment.
Community Information Sessions
An information and support service
In collaboration with other community organizations, we organize information sessions on relevant, useful subjects for new-comers. We also have a nurse who provides information on health and how the health system works.
Many hands lighten the load
Did you know that last year, hundreds of dedicated and committed people provided more than 100,000 hours of volunteer work? The Grocery Store has been able to count on the contribution of these volunteers to successfully accomplish its activities throughout the year. Volunteering opportunities are mainly available Monday through Friday. Click here for more information about volunteering possibilities.
Office hours for opening of new files
The WHM’s Free Grocery store is open as follows for the opening of new files (closed Monday afternoons and holidays):
Monday: 8:30 a.m.- 12 noon, closed in the afternoon
Tuesday: 8:30 a.m. – 12 noon, 1:00 p.m. – 3 p.m.
Wednesday: 8:30 a.m. – 12 noon, 1:00 p.m. – 3 p.m.
Thursday: 8:30 a.m. – 12 noon, 1:00 p.m. – 7 p.m.
Friday: 8:30 a.m. – 12 noon, 1:00 p.m. – 3 p.m.
Opening hours for Grocery Store (by appointment only)
|Tuesday||8:30 a.m. – 12 noon||1:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.|
|Wednesday||8:30 a.m. – 12 noon||1:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.|
|Thursday||Closed in the morning||1:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.*|
|Friday||8:30 a.m. – 12 noon||1:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.|
*Evening appointments are reserved for clients who are working or going to school