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The Centre commits over $800,000 to the Ottawa Food Bank, Carrefour Solidaire Community Food Centre, and the Northern Manitoba Food, Culture, and Community Collaborative

Projects focus on testing wrap-around services for food bank users, scaling a grocery card model, and funding to advance food sovereignty in First Nations communities

MISSISSAUGA, ON, April 28, 2022 /CNW/ – (TSX: MFI) The Maple Leaf Centre for Action on Food Security (“the Centre”) today announced over $800,000 worth of commitments to three partnerships with organizations seeking to alleviate food insecurity across Canada.

Ottawa Food Bank will leverage the findings from a Centre-supported research project to test and scale holistic, “wrap-around” support services for food bank clients, including employment services, mental health care, financial capability support, and language education. Carrefour Solidaire Community Food Centre (“Carrefour Solidaire CFC”) will scale the Carte Proximité program in Montreal, which seeks to increase the financial accessibility of fresh and prepared foods through reloadable charge cards. The Northern Manitoba Food, Culture, and Community Collaborative (“NMFCCC”) will grow their granting to grassroots and community partners across the province, support shared learning, and engage in community and strategic planning.

“These new project investments cover a range of supports for people experiencing food insecurity across Canada,” from Sarah Stern, Leader of the Centre. “We’re honoured to partner with these organizations to address the immediate needs of people experiencing food insecurity and to learn how to effect longer term changes. As a first step, we continue to advocate for the Federal Government to set a target to reduce food insecurity by at least 50% by 2030.”

“People who access food banks deserve help for the core reasons that brought them to the food bank in the first place,” said Rachael Wilson, CEO of Ottawa Food Bank. “With the support of the Centre, we will learn how to provide that help across the Ottawa Food Bank network and meet clients and community partners where they’re at.”

“After testing out the Carte Proximité model, we’re excited to scale the program with support from the Centre and provide more families with access to fruits and vegetables in a more dignified way,” said Marie-Claude Morin Ouellet, Executive Co-Director of Carrefour Solidaire CFC. “We know the strongest predictor of food insecurity is lack of income. While these cards can’t replace policy change, they are one step in the right direction.”

“This continued support from the Centre will help communities in Northern Manitoba advance food security and sovereignty in their regions,” said Julie Price of the NMFCCC. “Not only through grants, but in the shared learning that takes place between supporters, Northern advisors, community members, and staff.”

With these new projects, the Centre has made granting commitments close to $9 million since its launch in late 2016. In addition to this, the Centre advocates for critical public policies and invests in research that advance the capacity of people and communities to achieve food security. You can learn more about the Centre’s work at www.feedopportunity.com.

About the Ottawa Food Bank

The Ottawa Food Bank is the main emergency food provider in the National Capital Region, which works in partnership with a network of 112 community food programs to provide food and kindness for tens of thousands of people each month – 36 per cent of whom are children. With a focus on fresh, and thanks to the community’s support, on average 12 to 14 tons of food is distributed from their warehouse every weekday. For more information regarding the Ottawa Food Bank and how you can help provide healthy, accessible, sustainable food for all, please visit www.ottawafoodbank.ca

About Carrefour Solidaire

Carrefour Solidaire strives to promote the food security of the residents in Montreal, centering their work around shared values of social inclusion, well-being, popular education, healthy eating, and the power to act. With more than 500 active members, the Carrefour’s vision is to build a nourishing community where all members have access to good food in solidarity with each other. Carrefour Solidaire Community Food Centre is a partner site of Community Food Centres Canada, a national nonprofit working to address the root causes of food insecurity. To learn more about Carrefour Solidaire, visit https://www.carrefoursolidaire.org.

About the Northern Manitoba Food, Culture, and Community Collaborative

The Northern Manitoba Food, Culture and Community Collaborative (NMFCCC) is a collaborative of people from northern communities, northern advisors, funders and organizations working together to foster healthier and stronger communities in northern Manitoba through improved access to healthy foods and resilient local economies. Neighbourhood gardens and farms, wild food programs, bee apiaries, fishing co-operatives and greenhouses are just some of the ways in which northerners are using food to build community, improve health, create opportunity for youth and strengthen local economies. To learn more about the NMFCCC, visit http://www.nmfccc.ca/.

About the Maple Leaf Centre for Action on Food Security (www.feedopportunity.com)

The Maple Leaf Centre for Action on Food Security is a national charity committed to working collaboratively to reduce food insecurity in Canada by 50% by 2030. The Centre advocates for structural policy solutions and invests in knowledge building and programs that advance the capacity of people and communities to achieve sustainable food security. The Centre was established in 2016 and is governed by a board of directors, including four independent experts. 

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SOURCE The Maple Leaf Centre For Action On Food Security

Media contacts: Maple Leaf Centre for Action on Food Security: Sarah Stern, Sarah.stern@mapleleaf.com; Maple Leaf Foods: Media Hotline 1-888-995-5030, media.hotline@mapleleaf.com