RELEASE: Chili Meals Supporting Seniors with Food Insecurity

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Food Banks Across The Province Are Feeding Chili To Thousands February 16-23 

FEBRUARY 21, 2023 (Calgary, AB): Food Banks Alberta is bringing Albertans together for a bowl of chili for their province-wide Together At The Table events. The provincial food bank association aims to highlight the 73.3% increase in food bank use within the province since 2019, and to remind Albertans that community food banks are ready to support those in need. 

In Calgary, Unison at Kerby Centre is providing chili by the hundreds – and members of the public are invited to come out for a meal. Their efforts in the week-long campaign aim to drive awareness and support for seniors in Calgary experiencing food insecurity.

Why Chili? 

“The answer is simple. Chili has cowboy roots, just like Alberta. It’s a simple, hearty, and soul-filling dish that can be enjoyed after a long day of family-centered activities like skating or snowshoeing. The best part? Chili ingredients are readily available in food bank hampers,” says Arianna Scott, CEO of Food Banks Alberta

A number of initiatives in this year’s campaign focus on seniors, one of the steadily-growing demographics represented at food banks across the province. Scott says this can be attributed to the rising cost of living across Canada, but shares that members have indicated that many seniors still do not feel as though they are in a situation where they should be asking for help, despite needing it.

“We are hearing from our members that many seniors still see reaching out to the food bank for help as an act of charity – and that there are others that perhaps need it more than them,” says Scott. “They’re a tough generation and many have experienced hardship in their lives. We want to reiterate that our members are here for all Albertans, and that if you are struggling to make ends meet, we are here to help.”
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Danielle Murphy, Director of Business Development for Unison at Kerby Centre, echoes that seniors are increasingly accessing programming, including a Free Food Program which supports 100-150 seniors on average each week, and that programming across the board has heard that seniors are struggling. 

“We are excited to partner with Food Banks Alberta for this year’s Together At The Table event shares Danielle Murphy, Director of Business Development for Unison at Kerby Centre. “When people think of food insecurity, they often forget about our seniors, who are on fixed or limited income. Our participation hopes to highlight the programming offered here at Unison for seniors, as well as to reassure seniors that there are food support services available to them if they’re in need – both at Kerby Centre and local community food banks.”

Unison at Kerby Centre’s activation includes cooking chili in their Community Kitchen, where seniors can make a nutritious meal, socialize, and bolster their cooking skills. As part of the Community Kitchen, seniors prepare over 100 meals to share with isolated seniors in the Calgary community. This week, it’s a hearty chili. They are also providing chili to low-income seniors accessing their bi-weekly free food markets.

Scott is encouraged by the participation of communities across the province in this year’s Together At The Table campaign. By sharing a meal, she hopes that Albertans continue to be inspired to give what they can for those who are facing challenging times. 

“Food banks across the province have received tremendous support over the past few months from Albertans eager to help, and we are so grateful. We know that sharing a meal is a unifying experience – from physical presence, to social engagement and conversation, says Scott. “It is our hope that the Together At The Table campaign and events across the province can bring Albertans together over a savoury bowl of chili, and remember that food banks are here for anyone in need.”

Kerby Cafe and Catering (113 7 Avenue SW, Calgary, AB, T2P 1B2) invites members of the public to enjoy a chili meal at their Cafe for $10. $5 from the purchase of each meal will be directed to Unison at Kerby Centre’s programming for seniors experiencing food insecurity. Albertans interested in learning more can visit


About Food Banks Alberta: 

Food Banks Alberta is the provincial association of food banks in Alberta, with a mission to strengthen the impact of the provincial food bank network by creating new opportunities, increasing knowledge, providing resources, and delivering innovative programs. We seed connections for positive social change. We are composed of a strong network of more than 113 member food banks across Alberta. 

Media Contact:

Shannon Donogh

Food Banks Alberta Media Relations   |  780-616-1816

Danielle Murphy

Unison at Kerby Centre, Business | (403) 705-3253