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Food Insecurity in Our Community

Did you know that there is a large number of people living in Quesnel who are living in poverty or below the poverty line? The majority of people who live in poverty are single mothers, recent immigrants, aboriginal people, people with disabilities, and seniors. Poverty negatively affects a person’s physical health, mental health, education outcomes, community life, housing, and wellbeing. The 2016 provincial Child Poverty Report Card indicates that 1 in 5 children are poor in BC and BC is still the only province in Canada no poverty reduction plan. Food insecurity is a direct result of poverty. Many individuals must make the choice between paying rent and utilities or having food in the cupboards. In Quesnel, we have dedicated service providers and groups who try to address food insecurity. Below are some local facts on what we are doing at Seasons House to address this, as well as some information on what others are doing as well.

  • Seasons House provides breakfast and an evening meal 7 days per week to community members. We also run soup kitchens on the week-ends and days other soup kitchens are closed. In addition to this, we give out 130 PB&J sandwiches daily! This all adds up to nearly 4000 meals and 3500 sandwiches per month!

  • The Salvation Army provides a soup kitchen 4 days per week, feeding approximately 120 people each meal. This equals 1920 meals per month! They also operate the community’s only Food Bank service. Low income families in Quesnel can access the food bank once every two months and receive approximately 4 bags of food, plus daily donations of bread, sandwiches.

  • Our local schools do a great job at making sure our kids’ nutritional needs are met! Did you know that our local schools, combined, served up 71, 681 breakfasts to kids in 2015/2016?

  • The Anglican Church provides a soup kitchen every Monday.

There are ways you can help too:

  • Get involved. Volunteer at an organization that provides food services to people who live in poverty or ask what you can do to help them out.

  • Organize a food drive!

  • Talk about poverty within your social circles. Topics such as poverty and food insecurity are tough conversations to have; however, if don’t acknowledge the problem it will not go away.

  • Talk to your local MLA. BC has the highest poverty rates in the country for the last 13 years! Demand change and ask your provincial leaders to commit to a comprehensive poverty reduction plan now.

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