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Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Do The Math Challenge

Grey Bruce | by Daryl Morris  

15 year old student 'does the math' and finds food hampers not as nutritious.

Several people in the Grey-Bruce area are seeing what it's like to live off the contents of a food bank hamper for one week.

The United Way of Bruce-Grey is calling on residents to take the "Do The Math Challenge."

Jess Dandluk -- a 15 year old student at Saugeen District Secondary -- took the challenge the week before March Break, and says it gave her a new perspective on helping the local food bank.

Dandluk says before participating, she would just donate whatever happened to be sitting in the cupboard to the local food bank.

But from now on, she says she's going to think of more plentiful and nutritious items to give.

Dandluk says by the third day into the challenge, she was feeling very tired with low energy levels, and she found it difficult to concentrate at school.

She says there were a lot of canned, starchy and processed foods which didn't provide many healthy, nutritious options, and pretty much no fresh fruit or vegetables.

The 90-dollar food hamper Dandluk received for a week is typically supposed to last one or two people for an entire month.

Dandluk says she wanted to make her peers more aware about food banks and how to help.

Huron-Bruce NDP candidate Grant Robertson and his family are taking the challenge this week.

The Do The Math Challenge was designed to bring awareness to the growing crisis of hunger, and the inadequacies of support provided by the province.

Ontario Works currently provides just 585 dollars per month, while those on Ontario Disability Support receive just over a thousand dollars each month.

The United Way says that's not enough for people to live off of.


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