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City of North Van residents raise most in food bank challenge

In the month-long Mayor's Food Bank Challenge, the city raised nearly $56,000 or around $1 per person

For the second straight year, North Van residents have pitched in the most during a month-long push for the Greater Vancouver Food Bank.

For the Mayors’ Food Bank Challenge, City of North Vancouver Mayor Linda Buchanan topped eight other Lower Mainland leaders to raise the most funds per person.

In total, the May event raised nearly $314,000 – enough to buy more than 653,000 pounds of apples or almost 184,000 litres of milk.

North Van city raised $55,840, or 96.1 cents per capita. In second place was New Westminster with $75,632, or 95.1 cents per capita. Burnaby came third with $86,132, or 35 cents per capita.

Also supported by the raised funds are Share Family and Community Services, Salvation Army Chilliwack Food Bank and Sources White Rock/South Surrey Food Bank. Food banks generally have a higher buying power than the general public.

We can all agree that no one in our community should go to bed hungry, Buchanan said in a statement.

“But the challenges of the past two years, between the pandemic and high rates of inflation, mean that people are being stretched further financially than ever before,” she said. “That’s why I was happy to participate in the second annual Mayors’ Food Bank Challenge.”

The mayor said she was proud of North Van residents for once again rallying for food security. She thanked everyone who participated or donated.

Greater Vancouver Food Bank CEO David Long said public generosity had blown him away again.

“Thank you to all the participating mayors, especially Mayor Buchanan, for stepping up again this year and raising an incredible amount of funds for us to provide healthy food to those in need,” he said.

The non-profit organization provides assistance to over 10,000 people each month through direct distribution in the North Shore, Vancouver, Burnaby and New Westminster. Around 25 per cent of clients are children, and 17 per cent are seniors.

The food bank also provides food support to 119 community agencies throughout these communities, such as housing agencies, women and children’s shelters, transition houses and after-school programs, which in turn provide meals and snacks to thousands of people each week.