Hunger is a symptom of poverty.
We, and food banks across Canada, exist not because there is a lack of food in Ottawa or Canada, but because there are people who don’t have access to adequate income to afford the necessities – food included.
Systemic, policy, and societal changes are not only necessary to ending hunger, but also alleviating poverty. These changes require cooperation and collaboration from all levels government.
While our main priority is to ensure we provide the best food possible to our member agency food programs and the community, we also want to be heard. The Ottawa Food Bank has traditionally refrained from taking an advocacy role, but during our strategic planning process, it was identified that as the largest food security agency in Ottawa, we had a responsibility to speak on behalf of those with no voice.
We have and will continue to meet with councillors from across the city, sharing with them the food security challenges in their individual wards and the entire city. We asked municipal officials to include food security as a priority in upcoming strategic plans.