Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Hunger Report Says More Post-Secondary Students Using Food Banks in Ontario

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Hunger Report Says More Post-Secondary Students Using Food Banks in Ontario

Article excerpt

Report says more students using food banks

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TORONTO, Cananda - A newly released report says 375,000 people use Ontario food banks each month, about a third of them children.

The Ontario Association of Food Banks released its 2013 Hunger Report on Monday, to show who uses such services across the province.

Among its findings are the fact that one of the fastest growing populations of food bank users are post-secondary students and recent graduates, especially in rural areas.

The Hunger Report says there is not one college or university campus in Ontario that does not have a food bank or some kind of hunger-relief program onsite.

Post-secondary students make up 3.7 per cent of food bank users and in rural communities this group has increased over the past year to 1.2 per cent, up from 0.2 per cent the previous year.

The report also says more than 130,000 of the people who use the food banks are under 18, making children the largest group accessing food banks at 35 per cent of users.

"Children are by far the largest group of those who rely on food banks each month," said Bill Laidlaw, executive director of the Ontario Association of Food Banks.

"As a province, it is important to recognize that our neighbours, co-workers and children's friends could very well be facing hunger or need support with other vital social services. …

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