The Stroumboulopouli

The Stroumboulopouli

The place to get the latest news on what’s coming up on #Gtonight. Find out what Canada’s boyfriend is up to. Share stories, pictures, favourite tv and radio episodes.

CBC TV & Radio shows plus HNIC

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UN Ambassadorship for The World Food Programme

Saturday, December 20, 2008

The Season of Giving... and Eating

At this time of year when we're all preparing to sit down and feast with family and friends, food always seems to be an integral part of the celebrations.  But for some people, putting food on the table is an on-going struggle as they try to survive in uncertain economic times. 

Food Banks Canada, formerly the Canadians Association of Food Banks, does an annual report on hunger in Canada titled HungerCount 2008.  Their report shows that since 1997, an average of 700 000 people request food bank services and between a third and half of those who need the services are children.

Many people are surprised to hear that it's not just the unemployed or those on assistance who access food banks, but that many people who have jobs are also using food bank services.  The reason is that many jobs do not pay enough to cover all the necessities; often some Canadians are forced to choose between paying their housing costs or putting food on the table.  And now the number of working people who access food banks is growing, as costs go up and the stability of some job sectors remains uncertain. 

It's so important that at this time of year we celebrate and gift those we love, but we should also think of those in our communities who may not be as fortunate we are.  Food banks need donations to make sure that every person or family who walks through their doors can have good, healthy food on their tables.    

Your local food bank is always looking for the following basic items:

Peanut Butter
Whole Grain Cereal
Dried pasta and Tomato sauce 
Macaroni and cheese
Canned fruits and vegetables
Canned meat or fish
Lentils and beans
Canned soups or stew
Healthy snack items (such as granola bars)
Tetra pak, canned, or powdered milk
Personal hygiene items
Baby formula, food and diapers

Your local food bank may have specific needs, so check with your local food drives to find out if they need any particular items.  Food banks also need fresh items, such as dairy, meat and produce, so if you are unable to donate food, a financial donation will enable the food bank to purchase these items.

Have a happy and festive holiday season, and I hope everyone is warm, well-loved and can feast and enjoy the blessings of the year.


Barbara said...

On a local high note CBC Toronto is raising money and food donations and continues to do so until the end of the month.
For more info see:

Sounds of the Season Rings Out in Glenn Gould Studio
Our day of special programming raised over 8,500 pounds of food and more than $229,000.00 - and still counting - in support of the Daily Bread Food Bank.

Throughout the day, Divine Brown, Molly Johnson, the Barenaked Ladies, Jackie Richardson, Daniela Nardi, and cast members of the Sound of Music filled the building with joyful sounds.

Singer Sarah Slean, comedian Ali Rizvi and Zaib Shaikh of Little Mosque on the Prairie dropped by to celebrate.

Tracy said...

In this season of excess, it's sometimes hard to believe many people have so little.

I was part of an event where we had some fresh, untouched food. Cheese platters and home baked cookies among them. I'd found out about a drop in centre for the mentally ill - they were so glad to see a donation. As I walked to the building to drop off, a young lady approached me to ask who I was and MOST importantly - asked what food I had. Her eyes lit up, she smiled broadly, parted the sea of fellow clients and marched me right to the director's office to tell him I had food for them ... and good stuff too! He told me that they'd seldom receive good quality snacks.

It just proves that what might seem a small gesture in your mind can be a bright light in someone else's day. Along with food bank support, why not do a little research in your city for small and worthy groups that will accept untouched fresh food.