Addressing poverty

During the festive season, Summerlanders show their generosity with donations to food drives and seasonal gift drives.

During the festive season, Summerlanders show their generosity with donations to food drives and seasonal gift drives.

The need at the Summerland Food Bank and Resource Centre is higher at this time of year and the generosity helps to make the season a little easier for individuals, couples and families who are struggling financially.

The generosity is appreciated, but the need for support continues throughout the year.

Over the course of the past year, 272 households, representing 581 people, needed assistance from the food bank.

In past years, staff and volunteers at the food bank have seen an increase in the number of individuals, couples and families who used the service, but this year, some of the recipients have been homeless.

This is a problem which affects an entire community.

Those who received help from the food bank last year represent just five per cent of Summerland’s population, but even this number is far too high.

The presence of a food bank and the ever increasing use of such a facility show a serious problem in our community.

Poverty in Summerland is a complex problem, one without any simple solutions.

The cost of housing is one factor. For those receiving assistance or for those working part-time for low wages, the cost of rent and utilities represents a huge expense. Little is left over for other needs.

The low social assistance rates must also be addressed. The present rates have been unchanged since 2007, even though costs have risen significantly since that time.

Skills training and the availability of jobs are also factors which must be considered.

During this season of giving, donations to the food bank are appreciated, but the need is not just seasonal.

Hunger and poverty are year-round concerns.


Just Posted

Sharing Christmas with strangers through NeighbourLink match-up

Summerland initiative matches hosts and guests for special Christmas dinner experience

Summerland utility rates to rise

Increases for water, sewer and electrical utilities will be considered

Event to mark winter solstice

Ceremony on Dec. 21 will be held on Munson Mountain

Meningococcal disease outbreak declared in Okanagan

Five cases in last six months among 15-to-19 year-olds, including one in Coldstream

LETTER: Disrespectful behaviour not a reality

During the entire Banks Crescent section of the meeting, there was not a whisper from the crowd

VIDEO: Average Canadian food bill to rise by $348 in 2018

Atlantic Canada and B.C. will see the most increases for consumers

Debt-to-household-income ratio rises in third quarter

Total household credit market debt grew to $2.11 trillion in the third quarter

Charges in car wash shooting stalled

Court waits for police watchdog report on Salmon Arm incident.

B.C. Mountie told to resign after texting teenage sex assault victim

RCMP documents say Const. Brian Eden sent sexually inappropriate photos to 17-year-old girl

Family doctors should learn to treat addiction, not shun patients: scientist

B.C. Centre on Substance Use’s Dr. Evan Wood said efforts underway to change addiction medicine image

Four dog deaths investigated in Cranbrook

One vet suggests a parallel to these deaths and similar ones in 2016

Province rejects Ajax mine in Kamloops

KGHM Ajax had proposed a 1,700-hectare open-pit copper and gold mine, just southwest of Kamloops

Border officers rally at B.C.’s Peace Arch

CBSA employees tire of ‘lack of respect’

FCC votes along party lines to end ‘net neutrality’

Move rolls back restrictions that keep big providers from blocking services they don’t like

Most Read