The Wasaga Cares Food Bank Challenge

Wasaga Cares is participating in a provincial, poverty reduction campaign called Do The Math. From Sunday, December 5th, 2010 to Saturday, December 11th, 2010 participants around our community will attempt to survive on a standard food bank diet - the same as provided to any regular visitors. They will contribute a $25 donation to cover the cost of workshop materials (food & supplies) so there is no impact to the actual food b...ank itself.

Hampers will include a case study worksheet, where participants will sort out different scenarios. One may be "A single male, maximum Ontario Works benefit: $550, must find an apartment, furniture, basic needs and the ability to move; needs a job but has no transportation". Another may be "Single mother with disabled child, works 35 hours per month at minimum wage for $1275, must have 2 bedroom, accessible apartment, has no vehicle but must transport child to medical appointments in Toronto twice per month and provide foods that are dairy and gluten free due to severe allergies." These are just a few examples.

I've been canvassing mayors, council members, school staff and area businesses for their participation in this project. We can discuss poverty with caring, in earnest... but only when we've tried to walk a mile in their shoes can we truly understand the scope of what we're dealing with. This exercise is designed to inspire and bring true innovation to the discussion table. It gives grassroots an opportunity to embrace their own communities, build local solutions and implement real strategies we can all understand. To take up the challenge, please email: WasagaCares@hotmail.com

Many Ontario municipalities have already taken part in this study. We're a little behind spreading the word in the Georgian Triangle, so please pass it on to everyone you know! For background information and the origin of Do The Math, please visit: http://www.dothemath.thestop.org/index.php

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Carol Ireland

Carol Ireland

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CENTURY 21 Millennium Inc., Brokerage*
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