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Fund for northern food security announced by feds

The federal government and Food Banks Canada have announced a new fund focused on tackling food insecurity in the north.

The Rural and Northern Capacity Fund amounts to $2.3 million.

“With this government investment, food banks in rural and northern communities will be able to purchase food, freezers and much-needed equipment to make sure they can support their communities through the difficult winter months ahead,” Kirstin Beardsley, the Chief Network Services Officer with Food Banks Canada, said in a statement.

“As food banks across the country continue to innovate and adapt to current public health guidelines, this investment will be critical in making sure smaller and remote communities are supported as the need for their services goes up.”

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The funding comes from the Emergency Food Security Fund, totalling $200 million. The Rural and Northern Capacity fund is part of the first wave of that funding.

The first $100 million under the Emergency Food Security Fund was divided as follows:

  • $50 million to Food Banks Canada
  • $49.2 million divided between Community Food Centres Canada, Second Harvest, Salvation Army, and Breakfast Club of Canada
  • $800,000 for La Tablée des Chefs to help prepare and distribute meals mainly across Quebec to vulnerable populations through food banks.

Back in May, Statistics Canada conducted a survey that found almost one in seven Canadians lived in a household where there was food insecurity in the past 30 days.

Canadians who had been laid off due to COVID-19 were three times more likely to live in a household where food security was an issue.

Prior to the pandemic, one in eight Canadians lived in a food-insecure household, according to research conducted on behalf of the University of Toronto.

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