Calgary

$6M food bank donation has charities cheering

With an almost 40 per cent increase in the number of clients this year, a $6 million donation from local businessman Brad Shaw couldn't come at a better time for the Calgary Food Bank.

Brad Shaw's contribution will help meet a growing demand in Calgary

A volunteer sorts through donations at the Calgary Food Bank, which received a $6 million donation from businessman Brad Shaw. (Jennifer Lee/CBC)

With an almost 40 per cent increase in the number of clients this year, a $6 million donation from Shaw Communications CEO Brad Shaw couldn't come at a better time for the Calgary Food Bank.

James Stauch, director of the institute for community prosperity at Mount Royal University, says it comes at a time of increased costs for many.

James Stauch, director of the institute for community prosperity at Mount Royal University, says food prices are on the rise, in part, due to the low Canadian dollar. (Stephanie Wiebe/CBC)

"We're seeing a rise in the unaffordability of food generally across the board, and part of that has to do with the low dollar," Stauch said.

He says although charitable organizations often compete for support, addressing hunger has widespread impact.

This donation is significant enough that it has other charities cheering as well.

"It warms all of our hearts to think that there are those out there that, regardless of economic situations, they will make sure that no child goes without, that no child falls through the cracks, and that everybody has food on the plate," said Janeen Webb, director of donor relations with Inn from the Cold.

Webb says although cash donations to Inn from the Cold have dropped off this year, clients there directly benefit from donations made to the Calgary Food Bank.

That's a sentiment echoed by Carlene Donnelly, the executive director of the Calgary Urban Project Society (CUPS), which partners with the food bank.

Carlene Donnelly, executive director of the Calgary Urban Project Society (CUPS), says she's thrilled to see any organization get a hand-up. (Stephanie Wiebe/CBC)
 

"I'm always incredibly thrilled to see anyone get that kind of hand-up," she says about the donation.

Shaw also donated $3 million to the Edmonton Food Bank.

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