Sudbury Food Bank fights hunger and feeds hope, one deserving person at a time. As a non-profit organization that does not receive government support, the food bank is grateful for the support of local residents and businesses. However, due to unprecedented circumstances, the need continues to grow.
Daniel Xilon, Executive Director, says,“What we are seeing is not only an increase in users, but a change in where they are coming from. We now serve more new Canadians and seniors than ever before.”
Xilon references an open letter to the media penned by Mellaney Dahl, President, outlining the reasons behind the growing need. In the letter she speaks to the rising energy, food and housing costs as stressing Canadian finances. This is on the heels of the workplace disruptions of COVID, the war in Ukraine and other factors that affect the influx of new Canadians, household budgets, and food scarcity.
“Many Canadians are hurting,” states the letter. “One in five Canadians report going hungry. Twenty-three percent report eating less because they don’t have enough money to eat the amount of healthy food they need due to shelter, energy and medical costs. Sixty-one percent believe the cost of housing is now the biggest contributor to food insecurity in Canada and energy costs come in a close second. Canadian food banks are receiving requests for assistance from more and more first time users. In the past, people would turn to food banks during times of job loss or low wages, but over the past six months, Canadians are telling Food Banks Canada that they are running out of money for food because of rising housing, gas, energy and food costs themselves.”
Xilon goes on to cite a recent report, “One-in-three Canadians who earn less than $50,000 a year report instances of not having enough money for food between March 2020 and March 2021, and seniors in our area are twice as likely to access food services now compared to adults under 65.”
Typically, summer is the hardest time for food banks across Canada.
While back-to-school and Christmas are popular times for support, summer usually sees less food and monetary donations. This used to dovetail with a lull in food bank use during the warmer months, but that lull has been replaced by an ever-increasing need.
In fact, Food Banks Canada says this summer is on track to break records in the history of usage – and not in a positive way.
The need across Canada is mirrored in Sudbury. Every region, including here at home, has seen a sharp uptick in food bank usage and the need for more donations. While nearly everyone is facing hard times right now, the only way through for all of us is to pull together. Even a small cash donation or an extra tin or two of canned food helps. Anything donated helps someone in the community make it through another day.
In Sudbury, food donations are accepted in marked bins at local grocery retailers, and cash and food can be donated at the food bank’s warehouse on Webbwood Drive. Cash can also be donated online at the food bank’s website.
Sudbury Food Bank can be reached by phone at 705-671-9663, and email at [email protected].
Your help changes lives. Please support if you can, and visit the food bank for assistance if you are in need.