Heart of the Harvest – Helping Local Food Banks

What is Heart of the Harvest

Right now, members are harvesting crops that are going to help feed the world, and we ask that you help us to ensure that those in our communities are fed as well.  You can help make a positive impact by donating to our Heart of the Harvest campaign when you shop at your local Farm & Ranch Supply store or Petroleum agency.

Donating is simple. Next time you visit a UFA Farm & Ranch Supply store or Petroleum agency you can donate at the check-out till using cash, card or charge to your account. Plus, your donation can go even further because UFA will be matching donations, up to a maximum of $5,000.

A Growing Challenge

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Food banks across Alberta saw increased demand during the pandemic, but with rising food costs the demand has grown even more. With this increased need many food banks, especially in rural Alberta, are finding it difficult to keep up with the mounting pressures.

For many Albertans, not having enough food to eat is more common than we realize. During the Hunger Count, conducted nationally every March, a 29.6% increase in food bank use was noted for 2021. The majority of that increase was in Alberta.

“In Taber 204 households accessed the food bank in 2021, of those 55 were new users,” revealed Leah Jespersen, Co-Manager of the Taber Food Bank.

“Lots of folks don’t realize that food banks aren’t government-funded. We rely on donations from church & community groups, individuals, and companies. And, we do a lot of grant writing.”

While demand for resources continues to climb, another valuable resource for food banks is starting to decline.  Volunteers are needed to keep food banks in operation.

We have no trouble finding volunteers for events like our annual events or for food drives,” noted Jespersen, “But, we only have 3 part-time staff. It’s the day-to-day volunteers that are harder to find and we aren’t sure why.”

As a co-operative, UFA’s goal is to benefit our members and their entire communities. At the core of who we are is to help them thrive, prosper and succeed. That’s why the health and sustainability of our food banks matter. Because of the importance of food banks to our communities, we’ve supported over 100 food banks in the last year. UFA is committed to supporting food banks to help those in need with our Heart of the Harvest program.

Want to explore more of UFA’s Community Initiatives? Click below for information.

Heart of the Harvest – Helping Local Food Banks

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