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South Grenville Food Bank straining under “worst” demand in more than 20 years

Food bank usage has skyrocketed in much of Ontario, including South Grenville. 

According to a report released Monday by Feed Ontario, a group of hunger relief organizations, food banks saw a 38 percent increase in usage between March 2022 and 2023. 

Bonnie Pidgeon Coogler, the Executive Director for the South Grenville Food Bank, says her team has seen similar numbers. 

“This is the worst we’ve ever seen the food bank, in the 22 years I’ve been here,” Coogler says. “One day, in Prescott alone, we served 96 people. We used to serve that in a week.” 

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The Town of Prescott, Township of Augusta, and Township of Edwardsburgh-Cardinal are all collecting donations for the food bank during the first two weeks of December. 

Coogler says the communities are competing to see which can bring in the most food, and that she’s pleased to see her organization receive support from the municipalities it serves. 

“The good thing is, while we’re in this time of need, having support from our municipalities is priceless,” she says. “It really is so important to show that they’re part of our journey, and to help people along that process.” 

If you want to donate in Prescott, Coogler says they’ll be taking food at Town Hall starting December 1st. 

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