People all over Toronto just chipped in to collect food for those in need
A Toronto project set out this past weekend with a mission to collect 250,000 pounds of food for those experiencing insecurity from people all across the city.
It's a massive one-day city-wide food drive called Toronto Miracle that was started back in 2020.
"Inspired by similar successful events held in Chatham-Kent, Windsor-Essex, Northwest Territories and Montreal, community members decided to run an event in Toronto that would give everyone an equal opportunity to participate in making a difference," Miracle volunteer communications lead Cori MacPhee tells blogTO.
It might seem like a tall order, but in 2020 they got really close with 210,000 pounds of food collected from 6,000 donors by 2,350 volunteers.
Numbers are down a bit this year with 4,200 donors and 1,000 volunteers, but the need is still very present with donations distributed to over 300 community programs collectively run by Daily Bread Food Bank, North York Harvest, Scarborough Food Security Initiative, and Salvation Army.
"This year we saw that the need for food in our city was not just growing, it's skyrocketing," says MacPhee.
"Food bank visits have jumped 45 per cent compared to last year. There were close to 1.5 million visits to Toronto food banks last year, the highest number of visits ever recorded in the city. According to Daily Bread Food Bank's Who's Hungry Report, for the first time ever, first-time visitors to food banks outnumber repeat visitors."
That's actually a 61 per cent increase compared to the year prior.
Our 💙s overflow with gratitude for everyone who participated yesterday. Thank you! We're still counting 1000s of items, stay tuned for results. And if you missed out, you can still donate to one of our community partners to help make this miracle happen! https://t.co/WNYEQzQ4Ea pic.twitter.com/OEqNTVnwU2— Toronto Miracle (@toronto_miracle) December 5, 2021
Miracle collected donations from the entire city in their signature innovative way: people simply left non-perishable food items on their doorsteps on Dec. 4 after registering to do so.
Tonight, @TourCNTower shines blue to celebrate you Miracle Makers.— Toronto Miracle (@toronto_miracle) December 5, 2021
Today, 1000 volunteers & 4200 donors came together, heart & soul, committed to making sure your neighbours in need will not go hungry. From the bottom of our #TorontoMiracle hearts, thank you! pic.twitter.com/TnEnV6xkZj
The CN Tower was even lit up blue that night in honour of the initiative.
Sorting, weighing and tallying all donations is being done by their four food bank partners, with results posted on Miracle's social media.
Collecting hundreds of thousands of pounds of food for those in need is quite the feat, but even if you're only able to donate a little bit in your own way, just remember that it's more important this holiday season than ever.
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