Demand at food bank decreases in 2017

High Prairie and District Food Bank assistant co-ordinator Brenda Sandford is busy keeping the shelves stocked.

Richard Froese
South Peace News

The local food bank welcomes donations and strong community support to ensure its shelves are well stocked.

“We got a lot of donations over Christmas that will hopefully help us for the next few months,” says Kim Dumont, co-ordinator of High Prairie and District Food Bank.

Despite that, she says the food bank always accepts donations.

“We’ll see in the next few months how much stock we have,” Dumont says.

Demand was not as strong in 2017 as it was in the previous few years during an economic downturn.

“Our requests for hampers were down,” Dumont says.

“Maybe it was because our economy in the High Prairie region has improved.”

She suggests it could also be attributed to more or new social supports from provincial and federal governments that came into affect in 2017.

“I think that has helped some people’s financial situations,” Dumont says.

Despite the drop in demand, she says the food bank has seen trends in new recipients.

“We got a lot of new clients, about 20 per cent of people were new to the food bank and we had more younger families,” says Dumont.

“They could be newcomers to the region or people moving back to their home community.”

More elderly people are also requesting the service.

“We have a lot more of our seniors using the food bank, more than I have ever seen as co-ordinator.”

Dumont has served as co-ordinator since September 2006.

Besides food, she says other items such as laundry detergent, dish soap and various hygiene products such as hand soap, and toothpaste are also needed.

“What you use everyday is what people want,” Dumont says.

“Those things are expensive to buy, and people who donate usually don’t think of those things.”

For more information, phone the food bank at [780] 523-5777.

Food bank most wanted items/needs

– Canned meat [i.e tuna, flakes of ham or chicken, Spam]

– Canned vegetables

– Peanut butter

– Lunch snacks [e.g. cookies, granola bars, fruit snacks]

– Sugar

– Canned fruit

– Cereal

 

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