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N.S. charity says meal costs have increased due to COVID-19, calls on public to help

Meals are getting prepared and distributed by Souls Harbour Rescue Mission.
Meals are getting prepared and distributed by Souls Harbour Rescue Mission. Souls Harbour Rescue Mission/Facebook

Souls Harbour Rescue Mission in Nova Scotia is calling on the public for donations as it faces new financial challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We’ve done the math. We’re now serving 300 meals a day in Halifax, Bridgewater and Truro and the number will likely climb as other feeding programs are forced to close,” the charity said in a statement.

READ MORE: Some Nova Scotia food banks see more demand and more support

Souls Harbour Rescue Mission says it serves more than 50,000 meals every year to men, women and children struggling with poverty, hunger, homelessness, mental illness, addiction and abuse.

The charity organization said it has switched to serving to-go meals to ensure social distancing, but those meals, which include prepackaged items, are costing them more to provide.

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Relying on school food programs uncertain for Nova Scotians during pandemic
Relying on school food programs uncertain for Nova Scotians during pandemic

These items include bottled water, individually packaged snacks, fruit, and take out containers for a hot meal.

“Our normal meals cost approximately $3.11 per person. These meals are coming out at $4.85,” the charity said. “When you consider we’re now serving approximately 7,000 meals a month, our costs have increased by over $12,000 a month.”

On top of that, the organization said it has been forced to close its charity thrift store due to the pandemic, which has helped them generate some revenue in the past for their services and programs.

The public are now being encouraged to donate online or to call 902-405-4663.

“Together, we can do this! We’ve already seen a huge swelling of community support and we feel confident that Nova Scotia will continue to take care of the vulnerable during this time.”

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