Wednesday, September 22, 2004

You will eat what you are given - Let the food come to the people!

IF THERE IS INDEED A LABOUR SHORTAGE IN LONDON, THEN MAYBE SOMEONE SHOULD LET THE PEOPLE AT THE FOOD BANK KNOW ABOUT IT
Food bank opens new depot

DEBORA VAN BRENK, Free Press Reporter   2004-09-22 03:44:57  

The London Food Bank will inevitably need more donations as new neighbourhood depots open around London, organizers of the latest neighbourhood centre said yesterday. The Northwest London Resource Centre officially opened a new food-bank depot at the London Aquatic Centre yesterday.

It's a deliberate step to "move food to the people rather than people to the food," said Chris Romard, chair of the Northwest London Resource Centre, which co-ordinates the depot.

The depot is the third to open in the city this year. Two more are set to open next month.

Increased accessibility will in turn put more pressure on the London Food Bank as a central distributor and co-ordinator of emergency food to Londoners, Romard and others said yesterday.

The food bank, which supplies 25 area agencies including the depots, recently moved to a larger warehouse.

Valuable as the agency's work is, the basic causes of poverty and food insecurity have yet to be addressed, said food bank director Glen Pearson.

"I'm concerned about it, to be truthful, because I'm not so sure that's the way society was intended to work," Pearson said.

"At some point, we'll hit a wall and we're getting pretty close. That concerns me."

Just this week, the London Food Bank had to turn down an agency's request for aid because the supply of food donations just wasn't there.

Mary Yanful, project manager co-ordinating the depots, said tough times are bringing to light a chronic shortfall in security nets. "Now it's not emergency (aid) any more, it's supplemental."

The Northwest London food depot is open one Tuesday a month to people with postal codes starting with N6G or N6H.

That takes in a large geographic and demographic area, including Masonville and Limberlost.

"We cannot judge neighbourhoods' needs on perceived affluence," Romard said.

Area resident Mona-Lisa Cassidy, injured in a serious accident years ago, said stereotypes of the area hide the fact many of her friends are working more than one job and still struggling.

"Unfortunately, the type of money they make is not enough to help them move 'across the street.' "

Whether under-employed, on disability benefits or Ontario Works payments, people are finding that rent, food and utility costs are increasing faster than income, she said.

Cassidy said volunteers at the local resource centre give it a family atmosphere that makes it easier for hungry people to swallow their pride and seek some help.

"Northwest London is a huge community with huge spirit," she said.

Other food depots augmenting the main warehouse on Leathorne Street near Adelaide Street are at 910 Huron St. at St. Lawrence Presbyterian Church and the New Life Centre on Adelaide Street near Hamilton Road.

Set to open next month are depots at Kinsmen Recreation Centre off Barrington Avenue near Wharncliffe Road and at Richards Memorial United Church at Edgeworth Avenue near Clarke Road.

NORTHWEST LONDON FOOD BANK DEPOT

Where: London Aquatic Centre, 1045 Wonderland Rd. N.

When: One Tuesday a month. For a schedule, call the Northwest London Resource Centre at 471-8444 or e-mail nwlrc@bellnet.ca.

Copyright © The London Free Press 2004

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

IF THERE IS INDEED A LABOUR SHORTAGE IN LONDON, THEN MAYBE SOMEONE SHOULD LET THE PEOPLE AT THE FOOD BANK KNOW ABOUT IT

I think I'll be laughing about that line for a day or two, thanks ;-)

Anonymous said...

Yippee!!!!! Free food!!!! The whole welfare check can go to the beer store and the drug dealers now!

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