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.

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The weekly COVID-19 case numbers for the South Okanagan were updated on Wednesday, April 20. Penticton saw 28 new cases, while the region including Oliver and Osoyoos saw 21. (BC CDC)
South Okanagan records week of 49 new COVID-19 cases

Penticton was the highest with 28 of the cases

(Stock image)
COLUMN: Plenty of Earth Week activities scheduled

Summerland is holding 15th annual Earth Week activities

Renovations to the Summerland Arts and Cultural Centre building came in at more than $400,000. The renovation work was one of several large items in the first quarter of 2021.	(File photo)
Summerland council spends money on large items

Fleet of trucks, dam repair, arts centre renovations listed in procurement report

West Kelowna firefighters practice swiftwater rescue techniques in the Shuswap River in Cherryville April 20. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
West Kelowna firefighters make a splash in North Okanagan

Swift water rescue training brings team to Cherryville’s Shuswap River

Nick Trask, 36, and Ryan Ellison, 35, died in a boat collision on Osoyoos Lake in 2019. (Facebook photo)
Meth, excessive speed found as factors in Osoyoos boat crash deaths

Nick Trask, 36, and Ryan Ellison, 35, died in a boat collision on Osoyoos Lake in 2019

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and United States President Joe Biden smile as they say farewell following a virtual joint statement in Ottawa, Tuesday, February 23, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Trudeau pledges to cut emissions by 40% to 45% by 2030, short of U.S. goal

Trudeau announced target during a virtual climate summit convened by U.S. President Joe Biden

The BC Centre for Disease Control (BCCDC) reported 242 new cases of the virus in the Central Okanagan during the period of April 11 to 17. (Photo: BCCDC)
Slight dip in weekly COVID-19 numbers in the Central Okanagan

242 new cases were reported during the period of April 11 to 17, down from last week’s case count of 288

Letisha Reimer, 13, was killed Nov. 1, 2016 in a stabbing at Abbotsford Senior Secondary.
Second-degree murder conviction stands for Abbotsford school killer

Judge finds that Gabriel Klein is criminally responsible for death of Letisha Reimer

FILE – RCMP officers wearing face masks to curb the spread of COVID-19 stand by as protesters opposed to the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion block rail lines, in Burnaby, B.C., on Friday, November 27, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
‘Very scary’: B.C. travel rules too vague, shouldn’t involve police, civil liberties group says

BCCLA said that speaking with communities could have avoided top-down approach

Weekly COVID-19 data for April 11 to 17, 2021 on new cases reported in North Okanagan-Shuswap health areas show Vernon, Armstrong and Revelstoke going down, Salmon Arm holding steady and Enderby with small increase. (British Columbia Centre for Disease Control image)
Just one North Okanagan-Shuswap health area sees rise in new COVID-19 cases

Latest weekly data available shows Enderby with small increase, Salmon Arm holding steady

Yellow outlines show the proposed cut blocks above seasonal homes in the Bastion Bay area. Residents are concerned that the removal of trees could lead to slope stability or debris flow issues in the steep creek above them. (Submitted)
Landslide worries prompt request for logging moratorium at Shuswap’s Bastion Creek

Regional district shares residents’ concerns over possible landslide or debris flow

A West Kelowna man was left with serious but non-life-threatening injuries after a stranger allegedly assaulted him. (Phil McLachlan/Capital News/Stock)
West Kelowna senior seriously injured after stranger attack

The 76-year-old was assaulted after he approached a suspicious man roaming his trailer park

(Stock photo)
(Stock photo)
Summerland golfers hold all net event

League play continues at Summerland courses

Ocean Legacy Foundation members conduct a shoreline pollution cleanup in Vancouver. (OLP)
It’s time to end ‘suffocating’ plastic pollution along B.C. shorelines, advocates urge

This Earth Day, Ocean Legacy Foundation is launching a free educational platform to educate the public about plastic pollution

Most Read