University of Calgary Students’ Union launches Fall Harvest food drive

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WATCH: The Student’s Union at the University of Calgary is hoping to help stock the SU Campus Food Bank for the fall and winter. – Oct 8, 2020

With more students at the University of Calgary expected to lean on the Students’ Union Campus Food Bank this year, the union has extended its annual food drive for the entire month of October to ensure they can provide enough support for the months ahead.

Each year, the union holds a number of fundraising events aimed at helping out students who will struggle with food insecurity during the fall and winter semesters.

Read more: Coronavirus: Calgary post-secondary students react to 1st month of online learning

The annual food drive is one such event, but after the food bank was forced to remain closed this summer due to COVID-19 restrictions, and after hearing from concerned students, the union decided to make the food drive a month-long event.

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Until Oct. 31, non-perishable food donations, such as in-demand items like boxed macaroni and cheese, pasta sauce, peanut butter and coffee, can be dropped off at the Information Centre in MacEwan Student Centre. Larger donations are accepted by appointment, and a GoFundMe page has been created for those who would prefer to make a monetary donation, something that gives the union more flexibility when it comes to providing support for students.

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“[With monetary donations] we can actually provide perishable food in the hampers,” says Student Life Vice President Assad Ali Bik. “We can provide a more balanced, nutritional diet. We can provide things like fruits, vegetables, milk, eggs — all things that we’re unable to store.”

The overall goal of the food drive is to raise $2,500, but Ali Bik says that once that amount is hopefully reached, they’ll increase it further.

“The more we get, the more we’re able to help,” adds Ali Bik.

According to a release from the Students’ Union, the Campus Food Bank has been in operation for over 27 years, and during that time has been providing “emergency seven-day hampers to students and other members of the campus community.”

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