#TEAMGLUTENFREE is at it again! I am running for the 2020 Virtual charity challenge. Since being diagnosed with Celiac Disease…
You may know me as GFREEWIFEY, My name is Jessica. I began sharing my gluten-free lifestyle as a diagnosed Celiac online in 2015.
My mission is to be a positive role model for people with Celiac and living a strict gluten-free life. I provide tips, tricks and solutions for their physical and mental health.
This year has been exciting as I expanded my vision to have meaningful impact by starting GFREEWIFEY FOOD BANK.
I have been working to providing long term solutions for the community. The mission to provide access to safe food for all. Educate community partners as well as the public on what it means to be gluten-free, while providing solutions to address food insecurity. Especially for those with dietary restrictions such as medically requiring a gluten-free diet. As the first year of GFREEWIFEY FOOD BANK wraps up, I am proud to say it is amazing to reflect on all the accomplishments already made.
After partnering with Food Banks Canada, we determined that a great starting point would be to support The Daily Bread Food Bank.
Did you know Daily Bread provides food to over 300 food programs across the city! I focused on touring many local food banks speaking with tons of people both professionals and volunteers as I continued collected donations. I started learning what support was really needed and where. April 2018 I was able to donate $1000 to Daily Bread through GFREEWIFEY FOODBANK. Tons of awareness came from this campaign and the momentum led to more opportunities.
In May I was a speaker at Gluten-Free Garage; where I also had the privilege to run a hugely successful food drive.
GFG is a one day gluten-free foodie event in Toronto with over 65 vendors, talks and workshops. The highly anticipated event is catered to people living a gluten-free life. I was stationed at the main gates collecting gluten-free non-perishables. This food drive meant I was able to donate 200 pounds of gluten-free non- perishables to The Canadian Red Cross mobile food bank. Many thanks to my sister who stood with me did heavy lifting and helped sort and inventory at the end the day.
In June I was honored when individuals and organizations reached out to me directly for access to safe food.
Organizations like The Canadian Celiac Association reached out to me directly to assist them in providing access to safe foo for clients in distress. Having individuals reach out directly solidified the need for #GFREEWIFEYFOODBANK. I was able to directly help people seeking access to safe gf food. This ssupport is out of pocket as all donations are forwarded to a registered organization.
In August a $1000 donation was made to The Stop Community Food Bank.
This engaging campaign had me greeting customers of The Butternut Baking Co. A top gluten-free bakery in Toronto that is also grain-free, sugar-free, paleo and keto friendly. I loved connecting with each person who came into the bake shop. Raising awareness for access to safe food and celiac while ensuring a seamless quality experience that garnered praise from the customers.
There are so many great things in the works for this coming year. I just got word I have been nominated for the “Community Champion” award from Daily bread, how exciting 🙂
I am currently brain storming the best way to share all my experiences. Touring community programs, talking with great people without breaching privacy and confidentiality of the people who use these services. The need is there for access to safe food! As community organizations begin to take note of the need for gluten-free and what that really means. The success of these campaigns continues to grow with support from the public. The alliances I have formed with community partners to ensure safe access for food is available to people who eliminate gluten from their diet.
Watch for me at events this year collecting gluten-free non perishables. As always if your doing your monthly pantry clean up remember to donate to your local food bank or contact me to arrange a pick up.
GFREEWIFEY NEEDS YOUR HELP…
I am working on a really fun project and am inviting people in the community to contribute. Do you have a gluten-free recipe that you love or that helped you transition to a gluten-free life. I would love to hear your story about going gluten-free. Send me an email now for your chance to share with the community.
I want to hear from you if:
– You life a gluten-free life and have tips or tricks to help people transition to a gluten-free life and have a recipes you love.
– if you want to have a confidential conversation and are experiencing food insecurity / your local food bank is not equipped to support you.
– You work with a community organization, food program, healthcare practice, that would benefit from educational resources about adhering to a strict gluten free lifestyle. (Yes, it’s more than just food. Its self care products too like lipstick, hairspray lotions and medications)
– You have an event that would be great to host a gfreewifey food bank fundraiser or food collection!
– you wish to make a one time or ongoing contribution to GFREEWIFEY FOOD BANK.
To make a donation and support access to safe food for all now contact me or visit www.gofundme.com/gfreewifeyfoodbank
All donations are logged on gofund me for transparency. GFREEWIFEY Food bank is not a registered charity.
Thanks for your support providing access to safe food for all and remember “BUY TWO DONATE ONE” because if you have food restrictions and intolerance your not alone, people experiencing food insecurity have dietary restrictions too.