What is HOOTC?
Our mission is to “Eliminate Hunger in Our Community” by providing hot, nutritious meals for those in need. Served with dignity and compassion.
Hamilton Out of the Cold (HOOTC) is a not-for-profit, non-denominational program serving meals six days a week from 10 locations from November 1 to the end of March.
Last season we served 18,096 dinners and, in partnership with Wesley Centre, 8,517 breakfasts.
Hamilton Out of the Cold Program Coalition is a registered charity (Registration Number: 864263488-RR0001). Board members are drawn from the community. Two part-time staff members manage a lean budget.
How do we do it?
HOOTC is sustained by donations of food from local businesses and food drives.
We rely upon individuals, charitable groups, faith communities, local business and grants to provide money to fulfill our mandate.
Our volunteers include adults (retired or still working) – university students and high school students ( ages 16-18 must have parent permission).
How did Out of the Cold begin?
HOOTC was established in December 1997 at James St. Baptist Church by two retired teachers, Gloria Colizza and Sister Carole Anne Guay. It was modeled after Toronto’s Out of the Cold program.
Other Out of the Cold locations across Canada are not affiliated and each program runs independently.
Who are our dinner guests?
Men, women and children of our community who are struggling with hardship, come to Hamilton Out of the Cold for hot meals and warm companionship. We serve all who arrive – no questions asked.