Canada is a great country. It ranks eighth in the United Nations Human Development Index, has a median after-tax family income of $63,000 and has weathered the recession far better than most countries.
Yet despite this strong economic position globally, thousands of Canadians are struggling to get enough food every day.
In fact in 2010, nearly 900,000 people were assisted by a food bank in an average month.
This is the highest level of food bank use on record: a nine per cent increase over 2009 — and 28 per cent higher than in 2008.
Hunger is a complicated problem and one that many of us feel challenged to make an impact on. And Hunger Awareness Day, May 31, is an opportunity to get engaged with the issue.
On Hunger Awareness Day, Canadians are being encouraged to adopt any number of changes — big or small — that truly can have a positive effect on the issue of hunger in our country.
Food Banks Canada, the national organization representing the food banking in Canada, along with its provincial members and food banks across the country, including the Williams Lake Food Bank operated by the Salvation Army, are joining forces to encourage Canadians to make a change — big or small — that will help change the status of the issue of hunger in our country.
Katharine Schmidt, executive director of Food Banks Canada says: “We truly believe that every Canadian can have an impact on hunger and want to inspire them to think differently and take action against an issue that affects so many of us.”
So what changes can we make that will have an impact? Here are some ideas:
• Change what you know about hunger
• Learn more about hunger in Canada by visiting www.foodbankscanada.ca
• Get to know how food banks operate by connecting with your local food bank
• Change how you support your food bank
• Consider donating a most needed food items such as pasta, rice, canned meats and fish, dry and canned soups & stews, canned fruit and vegetables or breakfast cereal
• Already supporting your local food bank? Look at extending your assistance by volunteering or becoming a monthly donor.
• Change how you talk about hunger
• Raise awareness of the issue of hunger by talking to your friends about it
• Click that you like the Hunger Awareness Day on Facebook
• Share your thoughts about hunger in Canada on any social platforms you are active with, such as Facebook or Twitter
• Call your MP you want to see hunger addressed
Those looking for ways to get involved can contact the Salvation Army Williams Lake food bank at 250-392-2429, or visit hungerawarenessday.ca for ideas.
Hunger is a challenging problem and it’s encouraging to know there’s a day dedicated to raising awareness of it here in Canada, and offering Canadians ideas on how take action in addressing it.
Submitted by our local Salvation Army.