Mississauga families are struggling to make ends meet; one in five food bank users received help for the first time this year.

The Face of Hunger 2014Mississauga, Sept. 23, 2014 –There are hungry people in every corner of the city, and The Mississauga Food Bank needs the community’s help to provide them with enough nutritious food this Thanksgiving.

The Mississauga Food Bank launched its Annual Thanksgiving Drive yesterday with a goal of collecting 100,000 pounds of food and raising $75,000 by Oct. 17. The food bank has also released its second annual report on hunger in the city – The Face of Hunger in Mississauga.

The report tells that one in five food bank visitors received help for the first time this year, and more than 70% of users have been living in Canada for more than three years. Food bank staff hope this information will break stereotypes that food bank users take advantage of the system and are mostly recent immigrants.

“It’s important to remember that the people who use food banks in Mississauga are our neighbours,” says Chris Hatch, Executive Director of The Mississauga Food Bank. “When you donate food or money to The Mississauga Food Bank, you’re supporting your own community, your neighbours, maybe your friends, family members or coworkers.”

Food bank staff and volunteers will be out at neighbourhood grocery stores collecting food and cash donations on Friday, Oct. 10 from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. and Saturday, Oct. 11 from 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Look for them at Loblaws (Mavis/Britannia-Heartland); Real Canadian Superstore (Argentia/Winston Churchill); Real Canadian Superstore (Mavis/Dundas); Loblaws (Glen Erin/Eglinton), and Metro (Southdown/Lakeshore). Food can also be donated year-round at any Mississauga fire station.

Read or download a copy of The Face of Hunger in Mississauga on our website.

To donate to The Mississauga Food Bank online, visit

About The Mississauga Food Bank

The Mississauga Food Bank serves the entire city of Mississauga. Through its network of member agencies – including neighbourhood food banks, hot meal programs and breakfast clubs – The Mississauga Food Bank distributes food for over 209,000 meals each month.

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Media Contact:

Meghan Nicholls | 905-270-5589 x226

Community comes together to exceed financial goals, but food falls short

Mississauga, Oct. 22, 2014 – The Mississauga Food Bank is asking community members to continue donating food at fire stations and grocery stores across the city. More food is needed to meet the needs of people who rely on the food bank each month.

The Thanksgiving Food and Fundraising Drive, which ran from Sept. 22 to Oct. 17, raised over $82,000, well over the $75,000-goal. However, food fell short of the 100,000-pound goal – the food bank received 75,000 pounds of donations.

“We thank the public for their year-round generosity,” says Chris Hatch, executive director of The Mississauga Food Bank. “The food we collect between Thanksgiving and Christmas will be feeding hungry families in our neighbourhoods for months to come. It’s very important that we collect enough at this time of year to last during our slower seasons.”

The most-needed items are: canned fish and meat, peanut butter, canned fruit and vegetables, cereal and rice.

The Mississauga Food Bank accepts food and cash donations year-round. Information about how to donate foods and funds is available at


About The Mississauga Food Bank

The Mississauga Food Bank serves the entire city of Mississauga. Through its network of member agencies – including neighbourhood food banks, hot meal programs and breakfast clubs – The Mississauga Food Bank distributes food for over 209,000 meals each month.

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Media Contact:
Pamela Sleightholm
905.270.5589 x227


Root vegNew to our food purchasing program… 6,865 pounds of root vegetables!

Fresh onions, potatoes and carrots are on their way to the families who rely on The Mississauga Food Bank. 

These healthy staples keep well, are nutritious and important for a variety of recipes.

It’s your donations that make this possible – thank you for your support. 

We’re very grateful for the volunteers and donors who made our grocery store collection so successful! Thank you for giving us your time on Thanksgiving weekend!


Box ImageWith just over a week remaining in our Thanksgiving Drive, we need your help to meet our goals!

So far, 21,183 pounds of food has been donated – it’s our goal to collect 100,000 pounds of food. Please donate some of our most needed items at any Mississauga fire station or select grocery stores.

Since the start of the drive on September 22, our donors have given $40,186. Please help us reach our goal of raising $75,000 to fight hunger in Mississauga.

You can donate online, call 905.270.5589 or mail a cheque to 3121 Universal Dr., Mississauga, ON, L4X 2E2.

Thank you for your generosity. Happy Thanksgiving!

ScaddabushThank you to the staff and guests of Scaddabush Italian Kitchen and Bar!

In one year, they raised $25,000 for The Mississauga Food Bank from their “Charity Bread” sales. It was a pleasure to celebrate the one-year anniversary with them and to receive their donation to fight hunger in Mississauga!


Tax Credit Announcement

Jeff Leal, Minister of Agriculture, Food, and Rural Affairs; Chris Hatch, ED, The Mississauga Food Bank;
Bob Bailey, MPP for Sarnia-Lambton;
Corey Van Groningen, Owner of VG Meats and President of Ontario Independent Meat Processors

Ontario makes history as the first province in Canada to provide farmers with a tax credit for donating to local food banks

On Monday September 29th 2014, the Honorable Jeff Leal, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs, alongside the Honorable Ted McMeekin and MPP Bob Bailey announced the launch of the new Food Donation Tax Credit for Farmers.

This tax credit is the first and only one of its kind in Canada, making this a historic week for farmers, food banks, and the provincial government. Farmers in Ontario are now eligible to claim a 25% tax credit for all agricultural product that they donate to the province’s community food banks.

“Everyone should have the opportunity to enjoy local food, and we applaud the Ontario government for introducing a tax credit that will encourage more farmers to make that food available to families and individuals who need it most,” says Bill Laidlaw, Executive Director at the Ontario Association of Food Banks.

“Many food bank clients do not receive the recommended daily servings of fruit, vegetables, and protein, which can cause additional strains on one’s health and well-being,” says Laidlaw. “A balanced diet with local, fresh, and nutritious foods will help improve the health of food bank clients as well as the health of communities across Ontario.”

There are over 10,000  individuals, 51% of whom are children, relying on food banks each and every month in this community. It is only with the generous support from farmers and local community members that The Mississauga Food Bank is able to provide meals and provisions for those in need. It is without a doubt that the Food Donation Tax Credit for Farmers will help stock local food bank fridges and freezers, and provide members of this community with fresh, healthy, and local foods that they otherwise would not receive.

The Ontario Association of Food Banks is a network of 125 food banks and over 1,100 hunger-relief agencies. Together, we serve 375,789 individuals, including 131,734 children every month, through a number of food programs and services. This includes: breakfast clubs, school meal programs, community kitchens, emergency shelters, community food centres, seniors’ centres, and small neighbourhood food banks. For more information please visit

For more information or the request an interview with Bill Laidlaw, please contact:
Amanda King, Manager of Communications, Ontario Association of Food Banks, 416-656-4100 x2932

We had a great time welcoming the public to our new facility on September 27 during Doors Open Mississauga. We had a mix of visitors: monthly donors, food drive organizers, sponsors, board members, staff and volunteers from our member agencies, guests from other food banks in Ontario and visitors who are totally new to The Mississauga Food Bank. We also welcomed Councillor Chris Fonseca and MP Wladyslaw Lizon to help cut the ribbon.

Thanks to everyone who came by and to the volunteers who made the day run smoothly.

Rod Alafriz

Rod Alafriz

Each year, we recognize our Volunteers of the Year for the incredible contribution they make to The Mississauga Food Bank.

We wouldn’t be able to provide food for 2.5 million meals each year without the support of our volunteers. Together, they generously contributed nearly 9,000 hours of their time in the past year.

“Volunteers put so much energy and compassion into helping food bank clients, it’s a pleasure to be able to work with such a dedicated and kind group,” says Sharbani Khan, TMFB’s volunteer coordinator. “The Mississauga Food Bank relies on its volunteers for food sorting, collections, events and distribution — we couldn’t provide food for our hungry neighbours without them.”

Rod Alafriz, who has been volunteering with TMFB since 2002, is our Individual Volunteer of the Year. Rod has always been available to help out in any way needed. Thank you so much for your support!

Thanks also to Eli Lilly Canada, our Volunteer Group of the Year. They’ve proven to be reliable and efficient volunteers in the warehouse—we appreciate their continued support!

Team members include Kavita Ahuja, Philippe Assad, Kathryn Bishop, Vasi Diamantopoulos, Lesley Houle, Robert Landriault, Rajiv Madhok, Meghan Markham, and Seema Sesha.Eli Lilly Canada



Earlier this month, the Government of Ontario released its 2014-2019 Poverty Reduction Strategy – Realizing our Potential.

The Ontario Association of Food Banks, which was the only food insecurity and hunger relief organization involved in discussions related to the strategy, provided the following summary of the strategy.

The OAFB stressed the importance of increased support and funding for food banks, as well as increased access to affordable and nutritious foods for all Ontarians. While there is some mention of hunger in Realizing Our Potential, the focus is mainly on ending homelessness across the province.

In the first Poverty Reduction Strategy released back in 2008, the provincial government called for a reduction of child poverty by 25% before 2014. The government did not meet this target. Now, with Realizing Our Potential, the Government of Ontario is once again committing to reduce child poverty by 25% based on 2008 poverty levels, yet this time there is no deadline.

In addition to ending childhood poverty, this new strategy focuses on:

  • An additional $42 million investment for the Community Homelessness Prevention Initiative. This program provides funding to local governments to develop and create programs for the homeless in their community. This program receives close to $294 million in funding per year.
  • Indexing the Ontario Child Benefit to inflation. In July the provincial government raised this benefit to $1,310 per child.
  • Expanding coverage of health benefits for children and youth in low income families so that they have access to services outside the publicly funded health care system. Services include prescription drugs, vision, dental, and mental health care.
  • $50 million dollars over five years for the creation and implementation of a Local Poverty Reduction Fund which will be given to local solutions that can demonstrate they are actively alleviating poverty in their communities.

Finally, the only mention of food security in this new strategy is in regards to school nutrition programs:

  • Additional funding for 340 new breakfast programs in elementary and secondary schools, which will serve an additional 56,000 students
  • Expanding these breakfast programs to schools on First Nation reserves

While there is no doubt these measures will be helpful to many Ontarians, the OAFB believes there is more that the government can, and should do to alleviate poverty and food insecurity in Ontario.

The OAFB strongly suggests that you read Realizing Our Potential, and connect with your local MPP to discuss how this strategy will help your clients, and what more needs to be done to ensure your community is well supported by the Government of Ontario.

You can read the complete strategy by visiting