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Salvation Army feeling the pinch as food need soars

Earlier this year, the Salvation Army purchased $15,000 in dry goods, and when complemented by generous donations from community partners, would last them for three months.

However, as the use of the Salvation Army’s services continues to rise in Yellowknife, keeping the shelves stocked for that long is impossible. Officials say the situation is so dire, they anticipate spending a full year’s food budget in three to four months.

Major Tony Brushett of the Salvation Army says the organization currently feeds 100 families a week, up from 50 to 60 families a year ago. The families using the food bank are larger than last year, usually four- to eight-person households. Last year, it was one- to two-person households. 

Historically, the Salvation Army spent around $750,000 annually to support those with food insecurities. This cannot be accomplished without the assistance of the people of Yellowknife, including the individual who donates a small box of groceries and the larger companies. 

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Donations are down 30 to 50 per cent from 2023, and Brushett believes the increased cost of living has a lot to do with it. He says despite how incredible community partners are, there remains a noticeable drop in corporate donations as well. 

Currently, the Salvation Army needs non-perishables—”anything you don’t want in your cupboard.” They also take cash donations. Brushett says they can often get more for the dollar when purchasing through its community partners. 

To make donations, you can drop them off at the Salvation Army (94925 45th Street) reception area, and the receptionist will guide you from there. You can also make donations online

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