Good things hap­pen­ing for Es­panola’s Help­ing Hand Food Bank

The Mid-North Monitor - - News - HE­LEN MOR­LEY

This is the week Tim Hor­tons is hold­ing its Smile Cookie Cam­paign, with the Help­ing Hand Food Bank (EHHFB) be­ing the re­cip­i­ent of pro­ceeds from the cookie sales. Sales take place from Sept. 11 to 17.

This is the 11th year the EHHFB has been in op­er­a­tion. Their catch­ment area is 320 square kilo­me­tres and grow­ing. Each year the num­bers of fam­i­lies they serve in­creases and it is only through do­na­tions from in­di­vid­u­als and lo­cal busi­nesses, cou­pled with fundrais­ing ef­forts, that they are able to do so.

Su­san Kryzanowski, president of the food bank, says last year they served

2,990 in­di­vid­u­als, of which

848 were chil­dren. This year, they ex­pect to serve over 3,100 peo­ple.

Hunger Aware­ness week this year is from Sept. 18 to 22. Its main pur­pose is to raise aware­ness about hunger in Canada and how to solve it. Ac­cord­ing to their web­site al­most one in five peo­ple helped by a food bank is on a dis­abil­ity re­lated in­come. Many just don’t have suf­fi­cient in­come to cover rent, bills and food. Peo­ple liv­ing in poverty just can’t a bal­anced nu­tri­tious diet. Food banks do their best to fill the gap.

Part of the job of food banks is to take time to in­form the pub­lic on the work they do to al­le­vi­ate hunger. Even one in­di­vid­ual can have a pos­i­tive im­pact to­wards re­duc­ing hunger. This year, in recog­ni­tion of hunger aware­ness, the food bank will hold an open house at their lo­ca­tion, 87 Cen­tre St., Unit C, on Sept. 19 from 1 to 4 p.m.

The Help­ing Hand Food Bank is open every Wed­nes­day, from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. for those who re­quire the ser­vice.

While Kryzanowski says the draw has been fairly steady over the sum­mer, she ex­pects with the on­set of colder weather it will get busier. She points out that

100% of the money raised goes to­wards food and the sus­tain­abil­ity of their present lo­ca­tion. On their web­site the amount listed for the av­er­age gro­cery or­der is be­tween $80 and

$100 and fixed monthly ex­penses to­tal $1,600. The food bank is op­er­ated by 35 un­paid vol­un­teers.

There are sta­ple items that fam­i­lies need all of the time, with ad­di­tional items that are re­quired for a child’s school lunch. Items needed are listed on the web­site,­panolafood­ Ones that are of par­tic­u­lar im­por­tance are canned fruit, such as peaches, pineap­ple and fruit cock­tail; chil­dren’s snacks; jam; pasta and pasta sauce; canned toma­toes; canned fish and meat; and hot ce­real. They also have a need for non­food hygiene items such as tooth­paste, toi­let pa­per and bar soap.

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