The Société des Marchés publics de Montréal launches a new program, "Tous à Table!"
$50,000 in gift certificates for households in La-Petite-Patrie
thanks to the support of Desjardins
For immediate release
Montreal, January 24, 2023 – The Société des Marchés publics de Montréal is launching a new program, “Tous à Table!”, as a way to help Montreal households in a precarious financial situation. Thanks to the support of Desjardins Group, $50,000 in gift certificates valid at Montreal’s public markets will be given directly to people who need them the most, through the Centre de ressources et d’action communautaire de La Petite-Patrie (CRACPP).
In the current high-inflation economy, food security is increasingly threatened for many Montreal households. This new initiative will provide tangible help in the local fight against hunger. In La Petite-Patrie, the neighbourhood where Jean Talon Market is located, the CRACPP now provides more than 710 food baskets monthly, an increase of 30% compared with the peak during the COVID-19 pandemic. “Tous à Table!” is intended to complement the baskets with gift certificates for the public markets, an effort to diversify programs that fight hunger and poverty. During a first phase just before the holiday season, CRACPP distributed $11,770 in gift certificates to 335 households in need. “Tous à Table!” will continue monthly distributions during the first quarter of 2023, for a total of $50,000.
“The face of poverty is changing, and we believe it is urgent that we take action to bolster food security. Our goal in connecting donor companies and community organizations is to allow farming and agri-food families to feed as many Montreal families as possible. We are grateful to Desjardins Group, whose support has made it possible for us to launch the “Tous à Table!” program and make strides in inclusiveness and commitment to reducing hunger, while also generating local economic activity,” said Nicolas Fabien-Ouellet, executive director of the Société des Marchés publics de Montréal.
An anonymous process thanks to a local partner
CRACPP has been mandated to identify households eligible for this first action. Thanks to this partner specializing in food-assistance services, households that work with the CRACPP can now increase their autonomy and purchasing power thanks to gift certificates for Montreal’s public markets. The certificates are identical to those sold to market shoppers. This new form of assistance lets households in need choose their preferred products freely, anonymously and without stigma.
“We are thrilled to be able to diversify our food assistance baskets by participating in the “Tous à Table!” program. While CRACPP’s food assistance service is intended to complement recipients’ diet, it is becoming increasingly common for the baskets to be a member household’s primary or even only source of food. The gift certificates will allow them to obtain more food to better meet their needs, while also giving them more flexibility in the choice of foods,” said CRACPP executive director, Nathalie Bouchard.
More opportunities to come
By launching this first operation, Montreal’s public markets hope to generate several additional opportunities in order to help more Montreal households in a precarious financial position. Companies that wish to support the “Tous à Table!” program are invited to contact Montreal’s public markets.
About the Société des Marchés publics de Montréal
The Société des Marchés publics de Montréal is a social economy enterprise responsible for the planning, development and operation of Montreal’s public markets. Its mission is to improve access to fresh food through a network of public markets that brings Montrealers closer to local farmers and agri-food businesses. Since 1993, it has been mandated by the Ville de Montréal to manage the Atwater, Jean-Talon and Maisonneuve markets, six Neighbourhood markets and three Solidarity markets. It is a non-profit organization governed by a board of directors composed of five merchants and five residents of the Montreal urban agglomeration. Its membership includes nearly 200 merchants active at the public markets. The Société’s network of public markets is frequented by more than three quarters of Montrealers, with more than 3 million visits annually.
About Desjardins Group
Desjardins Group is the leading cooperative financial group in Canada and the fifth largest in the world, with assets of $397 billion. It was named one of the 2022 Canada’s Top 100 Employers by Mediacorp. To meet the diverse needs of its members and clients, Desjardins offers a full range of products and services to individuals and businesses through its extensive distribution network, online platforms and subsidiaries across Canada. Ranked among the world’s strongest banks according to The Banker magazine, Desjardins has one of the highest capital ratios and credit ratings in the industry.
Le Centre de ressources et d’action communautaire de La Petite-Patrie (CRACPP – Petite-Patrie community resource and action centre) is an organization that fights poverty. Through its activities to combat food waste and insecurity, it helps improve living conditions for members of its community and defends fundamental human rights.
For information and interview requests, please contact: Myriam Martin-Brochu Communications manager
Société des Marchés publics de Montréal