Frequently Asked Questions:
1. What is the House of Blessing?
The House of Blessing is a Christian, non-denominational, social service organization that provides home delivery and/or on-site pick up of free fresh, frozen, and shelf-stable food, hygiene products, diapers and formula and family resources to all people in need in our community. We also have special programs for families including: Off to School Smiling (back to school kits), Christmas Toy Program (parents and grandparents choose presents for children) and Welcome to the World Baskets (a hamper full of clothing and necessities for new babies). For our adults we provide workwear such as steel-toed boots and winter-wear for people who struggle with homelessness. We also register people for community support programs such as Feline Friends, and Kiwanis Christmas Hampers/Gift Cards as well as provide various community referrals (Sports Funding).
2. How do people access the House of Blessing?
People often contact us through our website contact form or Messenger. Some call us at 519-273-3433 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Some people hear about the House of Blessing from friends and simply walk-in for help. Numerous community agencies refer people to the House of Blessing including: Perth-Huron Public Health Unit, Optimism Place, Emily Murphy Centre, the Children’s Aid Society, Canadian Mental Health Association and the City of Stratford Social Services department.
3. How often can someone come for help?
Individuals and families may receive a food bank give once a month. People in unstable housing situations who do not have access to cooking facilities, cooking tools and safe food storage may come more often, as determined through discussion with our Intake Coordinator. Other services are available as needed.
4. Is there a means test that people have to pass?
Everyone is interviewed and we keep pertinent information in a confidential database. Individuals and families on Ontario Works or Ontario Disability Support Program automatically qualify for all of our services. When visiting the House of Blessing for the first time you will be assessed as to how we can properly address your needs to ensure you are receiving the proper help you require.
5. Does the House of Blessing promote any particular faith?
No, we are a charitable, social service organization, supported by local churches and many caring individuals and businesses. People are served without regard to their religion, race, age or gender.
6. Are the financial accounts of the House of Blessing audited?
Yes. An independently audited statement is presented each year at our annual meeting and is available for review.
7. Are your donation receipts tax deductible?
The Stratford House of Blessing is a registered charitable organization with the Canada Customs and Revenue Agency and therefore is able to provide tax receipts for gifts of cash in amounts of $10 or higher.
Our Registered Charity Number is: 119200020RR0001.
8. Does the House of Blessing sell any of its food supplies?
We never sell donated food supplies. We are a member of the Ontario Association of Food Banks and adhere to their Code of Ethics.
9. What are your hours of operation?
Office Hours: Monday to Friday 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Food Bank: Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday 10:00 a.m. to Noon and 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. (appointment preferred).
Food Bank Home Delivery: Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday - Please book online at shob.org/booking
10. How can I volunteer?
If you are interested in learning more about volunteering at House of Blessing please contact
Sandy our Volunteer Coordinator at 519-273-3433 ext. 204
11. Can I donate furniture, clothing or housewares?
No, we are no longer accepting furniture, clothing, or houseware donations.
However, year-round we accept brand new school supplies for our Off to School Smiling program, new baby items for our Welcome to the World Basket Program and new toys and pajamas for our Christmas Toy Program. For more information the donations we need view: Our Needs List.