How a Saskatoon man’s Fb web page helps feed individuals in want
SASKATOON – Bowman Blackmon started the Facebook page Never Hungry Saskatoon three years ago.
He worked in the oil industry, and when that took a hit, so did he.
When he fell into a life of drugs, he lost hope. After attempting suicide at the age of 39, he realized his life was spared, which gave him a new perspective.
This led Blackmon to help others while giving meaning to his own life.
“I knew I had to do something to give something back. A new life was given. I didn’t really know what to do, but God wanted me to do something, ”he said.
He started out by buying groceries for those in need.
The Never Hungry site started with just 50 of his friends but has grown to 1,300 followers. Many joined after the pandemic began, according to Blackmon.
The site allows followers to request food, then others answer the call. Some of the inquiries include information about how many children they would like to feed or whether they have an illness. Others say they need something to eat to get to their next paycheck.
Posts also contain offers from people who want to tidy up their pantries and make good use of the extras.
A single mother who follows the group even raffled two turkeys before Christmas.
Blackmon says he takes pride in everyone who has posted on the site gets help.
He’s monitoring the site to make sure the requests are legitimate and the food donations are safe for everyone involved.
He says it’s unique because people help others firsthand.
“You don’t just toss money at something and go away and say yes, I did something. That’s good, don’t get me wrong, but it gives you another opportunity to get active and socialize. “
He likes that the site supports other organizations like Tafel by providing people with food between the times they get their baskets.
He also says he has heard from many people who need their food delivered, such as single mothers who would need a babysitter to get a food basket.
Meanwhile, other organizers are securing a location on 20th Street for a Riversdale Community refrigerator.
The refrigerator is filled with groceries by anyone who wants to donate and is available to those in need around the clock.
Renata Cosic is one of five volunteers working on this project and says they modeled it on a Food Fridge program in Regina and Calgary.
“It’s even more important now as COVID-19 has to shut down the grocery bank and other meal programs for two straight weeks.