C.A.M.P. Community Assisted Meal Program
Through co-operation & mutual desire to provide assistance for those most in need, Durham Dignity For The Homeless & the LIFE Community Project came together to operate a free meal service 7 days a week in Oshawa.
Anyone can get a free lunch from 1-3 pm, a free dinner from 7-8 pm. We also provide free clothing distribution Wed/Sat/Sun from 1-2:30 pm. We are the only Oshawa based service that is open 365 days a year, regardless of weather or holidays we are there to provide direct assistance to those in need!
The start of the pandemic: as all assistance for those most in need, all food banks, all daily meal programs, all social services without notice stopped all activities on March 16th! There were 2 separate groups that continued on, Durham Dignity For The Homeless continued to bring meals directly to the homeless camps, LIFE Community Project (formerly LIFE Rally Oshawa) stepped up from their weekly Sunday activities & on March 17th started to serve a free lunch 7 days a week.
For more than 5 days the only support of any kind was found with the 2 groups & many individuals that hit the streets with free food!
In the first weeks of the crisis, these 2 organizations began sharing resources, as LIFE Community Project was focused on sandwiches for lunches while Durham Dignity For The Homeless was providing hot meals a few times each week. What one didn't need, shared with the other & LIFE Community Project began making lunches for Durham Dignity For The Homeless that would be directly delivered to the homeless camps.
As the summer progressed the need for lunches for the homeless camps decreased as the homeless camps were being dismantled usually within 24-48 hours & the homeless community began a migratory lifestyle moving from one place to another daily!
Each set of individuals were working 7 days a week without a break, discussions started & the 2 groups came together sharing the workload of providing free lunches 7 days a week.
Through negotiations with the city of Oshawa that felt that food/clothing distribution should not be done in such a visible place, the joint efforts of the 2 groups merged into a single effort at a new location close by the previous location. C.A.M.P. Community Assisted Meal Program was born, a joint effort with plans to expand to provide more meals & welcome other groups/individuals to join in the efforts.
November 1st, 2020 was the start of a new location & a greatly improved assistance effort for those most in need. Jan 27th, 2021 was the start of the second daily meal from 7-8 pm.