Single adults seeking food bank supports in Lethbridge
|globalnews.ca 12 Nov 2019 at 20:03|
An annual report on food bank usage in Canada shows single adults are among the largest user groups to access food bank services in Lethbridge.
In March, 2019 the Interfaith Food Bank Society of Lethbridge had 3,833 client visits.
Of those visits, 49 per cent involved single adults.
“The reality is we have a lot of people going it on their own,” said Danielle McIntyre, the society’s executive director.
“Whether it’s divorce, illness or injury or an employment issue, we find a lot of people who live alone are having a harder time paying the bills – because as we know, housing costs and food prices aren’t coming down.”
Children 12 or younger are involved in 29 per cent of Interfaith’s client visits and 27 per cent involved a single parent household. Six per cent were seniors.
“The fastest growing population at food banks is our seniors population, which is something that is frightening,” McIntyre said.
“As we know so many seniors are on fixed incomes and they’re going to have to figure out how to put enough food on the table in the future.”
Across town the Lethbridge Food Bank reported similar trends in Food Banks Canada’s annual hunger count.
About 60 per cent of its visits in March involved single adults, 17 per cent involved single parent families.
In Alberta, 43 per cent of food bank visits were from single adults. The hunger count report found one in four Albertans who rely on donated food are employed or were recently employed, according to the report – that’s the highest level in Canada.
The study also found that nationally 34 per cent of food bank clients are children, a group that makes up less than 20 per cent of Canada’s population.