Sask. Facebook group sending groceries to northern Canadians
Helping Our Northern Neighbours group ships groceries to families in need
It's not easy paying for your groceries when 2 litres of orange juice comes to $26 at your nearest store.
Helping our Northern Neighbours is a Facebook effort to send groceries to families in northern Canada that need help paying for food. The group connects people in northern Canada who say they need help, with people in the south who want to send food.
'We spend $100 in groceries, and that's $400 to $500 of savings for them'
Megan Clake organized the Saskatchewan chapter of the group, which started this past Sunday. She said within five days her group has grown to more than 200 members. She chalks up the volume of support to sticker shock at some prices she's seen in grocery stores in northern communities.
She's been a sponsor for a family in Nunavut for a few months already. She said she sends groceries to them and they have sent notes back to thank her. She's also learning more about the hardships they face in grocery shopping, and which types of food work best for them.
"It's a single mom and her daughter in Iqaluit," Clake explained. "We spend $100 in groceries, and that's $400 to $500 of savings for them, just because of the price differences."
Clake serves an organizing role with the growing Helping Our Northern Neighbours Saskatchewan group. Other volunteers have stepped up to become some of the province's 10 community 'drop-off points'. They're accepting food donations and packaging and sending them to northern families that have asked for help.
Donation drop-off locations
So far, the Saskatchewan drop-off points are serving the following areas:
- Moose Jaw
- North Battleford
- Prince Albert
- Regina (2 locations)
- Swift Current
"It's almost scandalous that in Canada today there are people who are struggling as much as these families are struggling," Clake said. "There is definitely awareness being raised and there are other groups that are kind of coming off of this now that are pushing on the political side of things, but we are really focusing on making sure people have food in tummies."
The Saskatchewan arm of the group has also set up a web page for cash donations to help cover shipping costs. Normally, Clake said, the shipping costs are up to the donor.