top of page

FCSS Hamper Project

Lisa Sygutek

Nov 22, 2023

I am sure everyone can agree things are tough for a lot of people.

I am sure everyone can agree things are tough for a lot of people. According to Canada’s Food Price Report 2023 from the Agri-Food Analytics Lab at Dalhousie University, consumers can still expect a food price increase in later part of 2023, with the most substantial increases in vegetables, dairy and meat.

“Overall, prices for all food categories could increase by up to 7% in 2023 with vegetables seeing the largest increase (6% to 8%). Overall, commodities prices are increasing, and the global supply chain has been impacted by multiple factors including an unprecedented price increase for numerous commodities and food products.

Some of these increases include the cost of crop inputs (i.e., fuel, chemicals, and fertilizers) which have increased by 50% or more.

Restaurant prices will continue to increase as businesses contend with rising food costs, rent increases, and labour challenges with the accommodation and food services industry seeing a 46.3% vacancy rate.”

- Dalhousie University, University of British Columbia, University of Guelph and University of Saskatchewan Canada Food Price Report 2023

We here in the Pass are not immune from these statistics, in fact we may be on the top end of the charts on economic to food affordability ratio.

I continually worry about the people in our little Garden of Eden. According to our last census, we are one of the ‘oldest’ community in Alberta per capita. That means that we have an aged demographic of which many are on a fixed income. It breaks my heart thinking that people may have to choose between food and heating their homes. To make things worse the predictions are that we are also heading into a recession.

I’m passionate about attainable housing. I still remember the stories of my mom growing up in this community as one of the ‘poor kids’. She didn’t have anything but hand-me-downs from other families. She worked hard to support her and my aunt just for the necessities. She never forgot where she came from, and she sure made sure I understood how lucky I was to grow up in a family that did not struggle. Because of her, I truly believe it is my social responsibility to help those less fortunate than myself. My door has always been open and my cupboards full for any kids that came to my house.

I found out recently that we have a substantial demographic in our community living in travel trailers. Rent prices are the highest we have ever seen, that’s if you can find a house to rent.  I know of families of five who are trying to exist right here in our community. I can’t imagine how cold they must get in the winter when it hits -20.

Last year I had the honour of delivering hampers with my two oldest sons. It sure opened their eyes to how lucky they were to have a safe, warm home with plenty of food. It made them realize their responsibility to give back as well. 

Our local Family and Community Support Services (FCSS) does food hampers for Christmas. I am the Council representative for that organization and boy do I love it. It’s a progressive board of people trying to make is easier for those just trying to exist. I know that every dollar donated goes into that Food Hamper, not administrative wages and expenses. How often can we be assured that the money we donate to good causes goes directly to it? My guess is not often! 

If you have a little extra - try to help. I’m buying a hamper or two, if you can afford it, please help as well.

I’m buying mine ... will you? 

bottom of page