Manitoba Daily

Tuesday, January 31, 2023

Every day, the Bear Clan food bank feeds hundreds of Winnipeggers in need

Daily provision of food for hundreds of needy Winnipeggers by Bear Clan

Key Takeaways:

  • Food banks are becoming more and more necessary as more people struggle to make ends meet and as inflation and food costs rise.
  • Walker asserted that they had seen how hunger makes many residents of the area desperate, which frequently leads to criminal conduct.

The need for help from food banks is rising due to some people finding it difficult to create ends meet and also rising inflation rates and food prices.

The Bear Clan Patrol is best renowned for its street patrols and assistance to needy neighbors. Today, that assistance also includes the food bank on Selkirk Avenue.

Kevin Walker, interim director of Bear Clan, revealed that his organization feeds 600 to 700 people daily.

Without that resource, the community will be under a lot of pressure, in my opinion.

The committee is working to reduce this increased pressure. The only source of funding for the food bank is donations, mostly from sizable businesses like Costco, Co-Op, and IGA. The organization collects all donations, sorts them, and distributes them daily to individuals in need.

Also read: In downtown Winnipeg, more police CCTV cameras will be placed

“People will enter, queue up in front, and enter the food area without paying.” There is no need for identification, according to board chair Brian Chrupalo.

The food bank evolved from a federally financed hamper program providing food to about 400 people weekly. Chrupalo claimed that the desperate need for assistance persisted as money ran out.

From Monday through Friday, the food bank feeds hundreds of people daily.

“Prices are increasing. The cost of gas is rising. People’s selections cause tension for what they will buy with their budget, whether it is limited or not, Chrupalo added.

Many people have told us they would be stealing food or jumping in a dumpster, and there is “no dignity in that” if we weren’t around.

Walker claimed that they had observed how hunger causes many people in the neighborhood desperate, frequently resulting in criminal activity. He recalled a recent encounter that several Clan members had with a man while on foot patrol.

“We approached a young man who was hungry and seeking food. He expressed his gratitude for our assistance when we could help him. I was planning on robbing a 7-Eleven,” he declared.

Daily provision of food for hundreds of needy Winnipeggers by Bear Clan
Daily provision of food for hundreds of needy Winnipeggers by Bear Clan. Image from CBC News

“So when you’re out there, it’s making a difference. extreme measures at dire times.

In addition to providing food through its donation center, the team also brings water, sandwiches, and even sunscreen on foot patrols to assist members of the neighborhood who look to be in need.

According to him, “We always welcome food donations like canned foods, packaged products, cereal, individually packed items, things like that, sunscreen, bug screen, or anything that you believe that may be used on the street.” “(Things) that are taken for granted and that not too many people have access to.”

Even though the food bank runs entirely on donations, maintaining it still costs the charity about $225,000 annually.

The rising cost of gas, auto maintenance, and the wages we pay our staff members were all mentioned by Chrupalo. “On top of the rent and other bills, it mounts up rapidly. You wouldn’t believe it, but providing free lunch costs a lot—$225,000 annually. For a little company, that’s a lot of money.

The committee is aware that the community needs to keep using this resource urgently. The Bear Clan is constantly in need of more donations, including money that can be used to buy items, food (especially fresh fruits and vegetables), sunscreen, insect repellent, and clothing.

Source: Global News

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