Essential Aid, a Hamilton organization focused on nutrition for children under four, is filling a critical gap in the food bank system by stocking a wide range of infant formulas.
The nutrition needs of infants are unique and many formula-fed infants can’t tolerate a change. Traditional food banks are unable to provide a selection of formula as it is expensive and product donations are difficult to acquire. By offering multiple formulas, Essential Aid assists families in immediate need – no proof of income is required as the organization believes that an emergency can happen to anyone. The infant food bank is seeing an ever-increasing demand; HCF’s grant will help to meet the needs of an average 200 children monthly.
Essential Aid also offers a breastfeeding support program which provides education, one-on-one support from a volunteer nurse and supplies. Last year, the organization provided emergency formula, diapers and breastfeeding equipment to 1,765 children, many of whose families were referred by other local food banks.
Exceprt from 2016 Fall Legacy newsletter