The struggling economy in Alberta, mixed in with the massive amount of donations for the Fort McMurray wildfire recovery, is likely part of the reason the Edmonton Food Bank is seeing less donations and more requests for help.
Marjorie Bencz, executive director, tells iNews880 when comparing to 2015, the numbers are down dramatically.
“We started to see the numbers of people who needed our service to creep up,” explains Bencz. “Certainly when you compare 2015 to 2016 on an average month, we’re service 5,000 people more with hamper programs than we did last year.”
Bencz says the economy continues to struggle and that is leading more people to go to the Food Bank for help.
“2016 has been a very challenging year for our organization because we’ve seen increased numbers of people needing our services but unfortunately we haven’t seen the same level of contributions that we saw in 2015,” explains Bencz.
Benz says the generosity of Albertans during the wildfires and evacuations in the spring is likely a contributor to the slowdown in donations this year.
“The average person only has so many dollars to contribute and that has made it a very tight situation for those dollars and for that food donation,” explains Bencz. “It has been challenging, we’ve seen less donations coming in from some of the major food drives we had over the summer.”
She adds with the holidays approaching, demand will likely increase but it is unclear if more people will begin to donate.
“We are concerned going into it,” explains Bencz. “We have this increased need for services and certainly the Christmas and festive campaign not only helps us provide services in the Christmas and festive season but also into the New Year when people still need us.”
Bencz says many are struggling and it is hard to donate to charity when you, yourself are not able to put food on the table.
If you are able to donate, Bencz says anyone who wants to help can drop off food at different shopping centres or at any food bank location. (twd)
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