Student Food Drives Set National Records

November 03, 2008 - News Release

University of Guelph students continue to set national records for raising the most food and money for local charities through the "Skip a Meal" and "Trick or Eat" programs.

Students donated more than $26,000 towards supporting local agencies - the highest amount among any Canadian university or college - as part of this fall's "Skip a Meal" program.

They also set a national record for the amount of food donations collected through the "Trick or Eat" initiative this past weekend, which raised about 44,000 pounds of food, approximately $87,200 worth of donations and another $5,500 was raised online.

More than 1,450 students participated in this year's event.

"This year's turn out for 'Trick or 'Eat was the largest we have ever had," said Jack Alvarez, with the U of G chapter of Meal Exchange. "We continue to set national records, which helps exemplify the fact that Guelph is the volunteer capital of Canada."

As part of "Trick or Eat," students dressed up in costumes Halloween evening and knocked on doors collecting non-perishable food items for the Guelph Food Bank. The amount of food collected will provide 35,000 meals for more than 13,000 clients using the food bank.

U of G students have taken part in the initiative since 2002 and also set a national record last year, collecting 36,000 pounds of food.

Under the two-week "Skip a Meal" initiative, students donate cash or meal points from their meal plans to buy wholesale products for 19 Guelph-area food banks, drop-in centres, shelters and neighbourhood groups.

This year's initiative ran from Sept. 22 to Oct. 3, and the funds donated created some 10,500 meals for those in need.

U of G students have taken part in this twice-yearly program since 1997, contributing more than $260,000 worth of food.

Both food collection initiatives are part of Meal Exchange, a national student-run organization that aims to engage students from 45 Canadian campuses in solving the problem of hunger in their communities. The Guelph chapter is managed by the Central Student Association.

For more information on Meal Exchange.

For media questions, contact Communications and Public Affairs: Lori Bona Hunt, 519-824-4120, Ext. 53338/, or Deirdre Healey, Ext. 56982/

University of Guelph
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Guelph, Ontario, N1G 2W1