People baking loaves in a kitchen

In the minds of many, The Compass Food Bank & Outreach Centre provides food to people living in south Mississauga who need it. On the first floor of that big blue and white building on the north side of Lakeshore Road East, between Hurontario and Cawthra, The Compass is primarily a food bank. At least, that’s the impression many of our neighbours have. There’s been a lot of talk making the rounds lately about the perceived problems that The Compass presents to the residents and businesses that live and work in Mississauga Lakeshore Ward 1 and Ward 2. How much is opinion? How much is hearsay? How much is fact?

On the first floor of that big blue and white building, much more goes on than the workings of a food bank. We have over 4,000 registered clients, about half of which come to us on a weekly basis for groceries and hot meals from our kitchen. It’s important to the staff, volunteers and our Board that every person who steps inside our doors is treated with dignity, respect, and that they always feel safe to be here. Inside our doors age, gender, ethnicity, sexual preference, culture, religion all meld into one and everyone is welcomed and treated equally.

In order for us to provide “Help For Today and Hope For Tomorrow”, we do not judge. Nor do we turn a blind eye. We have guidelines that every person is held to so we can provide many kinds of help in a safe environment that we can all trust and rely upon. The Compass is a bridge to helping people in south Mississauga who are in need of affordable housing, shelter, nutritious food, employment, help with mental health counselling, nursing care, harm reduction, and much more. We hear from first responders and other occupations who have feet on the ground every day that there are more people experiencing homelessness and food insecurity than residents can even see.

The Compass can’t solve the bigger issues that lead to people becoming our clients, not alone anyway, but we can certainly continue to advocate along with other (groups) for affordable housing and rents, affordable food prices, reasonable day-to-day utilities, access to employment, healthcare and other major issues that many in our community face.

In January of this year, The Compass gathered a group of staff, Board members, volunteers, and community representatives to develop a Strategic Plan for the next 3-5 years. With the help of consultants, we were able to finalize the plan in March.

There are four main pillars that we will focus on to move The Compass Food bank & Outreach Centre forward. These themes are:

  1. Enhance Client Services
  2. Amplify Advocacy
  3. Grow Organizational Capacity
  4. Generate Sustainable Funding

 

We hope this provides some insight as to who we are, what we do and why we are a valuable component of the Ward 1 and 2 communities. We appreciate your ongoing interest and support and are always pleased to answer any questions.

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