One token one meal it’s as easy as that.
Bosco Anthony is an immigrant. He arrived in Canada with his family at the age of 19 and he’s worked hard every day since to build a better life for himself and his family. He hasn’t done it alone though, sure the drive is his and so is the work ethnic but if it wasn’t for mentors and opportunities that they helped facilitate he wouldn’t be where he is. It’s with that awareness and sense of gratitude that Bosco approached me with to participate in 30 Days Of Kindness. Bosco wanted to do something that would connect with people that had been less fortunate than himself but were trying to better their situation. He chose the Save On Meats Sandwich Token Program and the Rainier Hotel.
You may have heard of the Sandwich Token Program before. The brainchild of restaurateur and community activist Mark Brand, the program was set up to to make it easy for people like Bosco who wanted to help those in the DTES with a nutritious meal. Each token costs $2.25 to purchase and can be redeemed at Save On Meats for a nutritious hot breakfast sandwich. This way you can give a token knowing it will be used for food and not wasted on anything else.
I met up with Bosco at Save On Meats just as he was picking up his tokens, 100 in all. That is 100 hot nutritious meals during the wettest and coldest season in Vancouver.
Now that Bosco has the tokens it’s time to give them out. Options are everywhere. He could hand them out as we walk along the street or he could find a nearby program that has had it’s funding slashed and hand them over to them for distribution amongst it’s members and program participants. Bingo that’s the choice he made and the program Bosco chooses is the Rainier Hotel which has been instrumental in helping treat at risk women with substance abuse problems and it’s only a block from Save On Meats.
When we arrived to drop off the tokens we actually met some of the women in the lobby and to say they were ecstatic is an understatement. They all knew of the program and were thrilled to get some tokens. Program funding for Rainier has been cut and one of the services affected was the food program so these tokens are a real treat and a ray of sunshine for the women.
Food is more than just about nutrients it is the basic foundation of community and Bosco grew his community today. Thanks to Save On Meats and the Rainier Hotel for all their hard work and allowing us to be a small part of their day. Next time you have a meal at Save On Meats Diner add a token onto your bill, it’s only $2.25 and means someone else gets to eat a hot meal.
Speaking of community two amazing Chefs, Chef Jean-Francis and Chef Alessandra Quaglia of Provence Restaurants have built their own community in Vancouver. With Provence Marinaside, Provence Mediterranean Grill and The Wine Bar they’ve created places where people join together over great food and wine. Chances are good that you will see me at The Wine Bar enjoying some antipasti and wine, please come up and say hello. Provence is being kind and helping me bring this series to life so please be kind to them and follow them on Facebook and Twitter. Bon Appetite.