Alberta food banks to benefit from latest cash infusion

Food banks across Alberta are getting a shot in the arm after the province announced Nov. 6 it’s providing almost $4 million in new funding.

“Nobody should ever be left wondering where their next meal will come from,” said Jason Nixon, minister of seniors, community and social services, who unveiled a $10-million package, $3.7 million of which will be distributed this month.

The $10-million figure already included an infusion of $900,000 to the Family and Community Support Services Association of Alberta, with a further $4.1 million to be applied for this month by smaller organizations that plan to provide culturally appropriate food to their clients.

Of the $3.7 million of new money announced last week, $8,000 each has been awarded to the Crowsnest Pass and Pincher Creek operations.

“This is such welcome news,” Crowsnest Pass, Alta. food bank manager, Desiree Erdmann, said Monday. “It will really help us as we go into the Christmas season.”

Through previous grants, Erdmann said, the facility has been able to purchase new appliances like fridges and freezers. With the new funding from the province, it can now fill that space with the food it needs, as demand continues to rise — “big time,” in her words.

The same holds true for the Pincher Creek and District Community Food Centre, which is likewise receiving its cash infusion to help with growing demand.

“We’re really grateful to the province for the financial support,” said Anne Gover, chairwoman of the centre’s board. “It couldn’t have come at a better time.”

Dave Lueneberg, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Shootin' the Breeze