5 actions to take during Hunger Action Month

by | Aug 30, 2023 | Community, Food Waste, Hunger Relief

Every year, we dedicate September to raising awareness about hunger and finding solutions to tackling food insecurity. This Hunger Action Month we’re focused on action. Want to get involved and make a difference in the lives of millions of people in Canada facing food insecurity?  

Here’s a list of actions you can take today!  

1. Be informed

Food insecurity is a persistent issue in Canada and its magnitude is growing. In 2022, about 6.9 million Canadians reported living in food-insecure households, including 1.8 million children. This represents 18.4 per cent of people in the ten provinces, an increase from 15.9 per cent in the year before.  

While food insecurity can happen to anyone, some groups in the population are at higher risk than others, including recent immigrants, Indigenous communities and people from racialized groups, according to the latest Hunger Count report by Food Banks Canada. 

Food insecurity is closely connected to physical, mental and social well-being, but children are especially vulnerable. A new study published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal showed that children growing up in food-insecure households are more likely to access support services for mental health or substance abuse. 

2. Volunteer

Volunteers play an important role in many non-profits’ operations. Even spending a few hours a month volunteering in your local community can make a difference. No amount of help is too small! Before starting, make sure to attend an information session to learn more about the organization and the positions that suit your skills and interests.  

Second Harvest welcomes individual and group volunteers all year-round for food sorts, events and administrative support. To become a Second Harvest volunteer, submit an application here.  

3. Donate

Hunger Action Month is your opportunity to make a difference in the lives of the millions of people in Canada facing food insecurity with a secure one-time donation. This is your invitation to join our mission – take a stand against hunger today! 

Donations to Second Harvest during Hunger Action Month will be matched by TUMS, up to $75,000. That means for every $10 you donate, $20 will be put into action through Second Harvest, fighting food waste and redistributing healthy surplus food to non-profits all across Canada. 

4. Reduce food waste

Taking action against hunger isn’t just about providing sustenance; it’s a hard-fought battle against waste. Letting good food end up in landfills doesn’t make sense when 6.9 million Canadians struggle to eat.  

The first step to food waste prevention begins at home. All it takes is as simple as shopping for only what you need or making a small change in how you store your produce.  

If you’re running a food business, sign up as a donor on the Second Harvest Food Rescue App. It’s a quick and easy process to connect directly with non-profits in the local community and redirect surplus food to those who need it the most. You can also see the impact of your donation through the app, including the number of meals provided and pounds of greenhouse gases averted from the atmosphere.   

5. Advocate

Advocacy involves keeping yourself informed about policies affecting food security and the food system, adopting a solution-focused mindset and sharing your knowledge with the community around you.  

You can also reach out to your elected officials to show your support for policies that make life more affordable. That includes improving access to housing, nutritious food, as well as ensuring living wages for everyone.  

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