There is a lot of gift-giving going on these days, there are so many people to buy for, so many gifts to get for those who seem to have everything, so many cookies to bake and turkeys to baste. So much giving! T’is the season!
T’is indeed. Of course the irony is we spend the time and money on those with plenty, not those in need. This year, instead of buying Uncle Harry another trout tie, or naming a star after your second cousin’s half-brother, how about considering those less-fortunate, those in our city who are easy to buy for, those who are hungry, or cold.
Even if you don’t know anyone personally who is in need, there are lots of ways to give a little; it will go a long way to help ensuring that, at least over the holiday season, someone in trouble, or a family fallen on hard times will have a little hope.
Recently Tristin Hopper of the National Post wrote an article exhorting people to cease giving canned goods to local food charities, but rather give a cash donation instead, his rationale explained thusly:
“That $1 you spent on tuna could have purchased $4 worth of tuna if put in the hands of non-profit employee whose only job is to buy food as cheaply as possible. The savvy buyers at the Calgary Food Bank, for instance, promise that they can stretch $1 into $5.”-Tristin Hopper
There are so many ways to give. Food Banks Canada has an excellent website full of ideas on how to make a difference, and getting the most bang for your buck and for your time. Locally, The Stop Community Food Centre not only literally feeds people on a daily basis, their mission is to build a community that increases access to healthy food for all, and “ maintains dignity, builds health and community, and challenges inequality.”
“For over 30 years, The Stop Community Food Centre has been at the forefront of dignified, innovative programs that provide access to healthy food; build skills, health, hope, and community; and confront the underlying issues that lead to poverty and hunger. Our wide range of programs include drop-in meals, a food bank, community kitchens and gardens, perinatal and family support, civic engagement, and children and youth engagement”- http://thestop.org/
If you’re having trouble getting started, or not sure where to begin, don’t fret: The Stop makes it easy to donate. This holiday season alone, The Stop will donate over 5,000 delicious and nutritious food hampers to their neighbours in Davenport West, so don’t get us wrong, healthy and delicious canned items are still highly desirable items at any food bank, especially nutrient dense items like nut butters, dry or canned beans, soy milk, canned fish like tuna, sardines and salmon.
Why not drop by The Stop this weekend and see what’s going on, and while you’re at it, drop off a little something in the bin at the front of the store. You’ll be amazed at how good that feels.