Edmonton charity says it's in need of funding to continue feeding less fortunate

As Thanksgiving weekend approaches, an Edmonton charity that provides food for over 500 families and seniors experiencing chronic poverty says its program is in jeopardy.

Officials with the Grocery Run Program say funding is coming to an end while demand for food continues to rise amid the fourth wave of the pandemic.  

“When the pandemic first began we actually initiated a rapid survey of our clients accessing the program of the Multicultural Health Brokers, and we saw that about 68 per cent of families were in a current need of food, and another 52 per cent of families had experienced a loss of employment or reduction of hours due to the pandemic,” Julia Tran, the food dignity program manager of the Grocery Run, stated in a news release. 

“We quickly went from helping 100 families to over 500,” Tran added. 

Grocery Run officials say the program serves 3,200 individuals each week, and more than half of those are children.

Many of the people who rely on the Grocery Run Program for food are new Canadians and refugee families.

HOPING TO RAISE $150,000

The Grocery Run has launched a GoFundMe campaign in an effort to raise $150,000 to go toward its operation.

According to Grocery Run officials, 50 per cent of the program's food hampers are made possible by partnerships with Edmonton's Food Bank and Leftovers Edmonton Foundation.  

The operation is run with the help of more than 60 community volunteers.