CORNWALL, Ontario – Nine individuals have dedicated themselves to raise awareness about issues of hunger and food scarcity next week for the Agapè Centre’s annual Hunger Awareness Challenge.
The Challenge will see the nine participants live off of food they receive from the Agapè Centre food bank, plus $10 in spending money for one week. Participants are as follows: Nick Seebruch, Chelsea Jodoin, Joshua Santos, Victoria Villalba, Andrew Nielsen, Kat Rendek, Stephen Douris, Mai Liis, and the five members of the Nielsen family.
The goal of this endeavour is to raise awareness about the need for services like the Agapè Centre food bank in the community, and raise funds for that non-profit.
There are roughly 1,400 individuals in Cornwall who depend on food from the Agapè Centre every month, ranging in age from seniors, to young families with children. Even families with pets, get their food for their furry friends from the Agapè Centre.
In addition to the food they get from the food bank, participants also will be able to get their lunches to go from the Agapè Centre soup kitchen. The soup kitchen, which re-opened the week of Sept. 16 served roughly 150 individuals every day prior to the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The Hunger Challenge is a great fundraiser for us,” said Lisa Duprau, Executive Director of the Agapè Centre. “For me, it is more about the educational aspect for the community,” Duprau explained, pointing to the numbers of people who use their services, and the sometimes limited supplies they have to offer.
Duprau herself participated in the challenge in 2019.
“I found it difficult to make meals for myself with what I had,” she said. “Not having all of your ingredients available sometimes, it was really challenging and humbling.”
Duprau explained that the food bank had seen an increased demand on its services since the start of the pandemic, but she was hopeful for the success of this fundraiser given the number of participants who volunteered.
Donations of food that the food bank is always seeking include peanut butter, canned vegetables and meats, pasta and pasta sauce.
Those wishing to support the Agapè Centre financially can donate money through e-transfer to firstname.lastname@example.org
Editor’s note: The author of this article is also a participant in this year’s Hunger Awareness Challenge.