Students donate $17,000 to food banks, charities
University of Guelph students have donated $17,000 from their meal plans to buy food for local charities through Meal Exchange, a student-run national campus charity. This semester, U of G students have raised the highest amount of any Canadian university or college through Meal Exchange.
The students’ donations will be used to buy wholesale products for 17 organizations throughout the city that support abused women, homeless teens and people who use food banks. Through Meal Exchange’s “Skip a Meal” program, students buy specialty items that aren’t often collected in traditional food drives, such as ethnic and diabetic foods.
On Nov. 27, dozens of U of G student volunteers will deliver the food to the organizations. “Meal Exchange creates a way for students to make a difference,” said Anita Abraham, a Meal Exchange co-ordinator and fourth-year U of G student. “Students at the University of Guelph bring so much hope to our city through their community-conscious actions. It’s absolutely incredible to witness the social change that is possible through mobilization of my generation.”
In the past month, U of G students have contributed more than $50,000 in food to local organizations through “Skip a Meal” and the Meal Exchange’s “Trick or Eat” Halloween food drive. “These programs are supported by many services on campus,” said Abraham. “Hospitality Services, Interhall Council and the Central Student Association are essential in the execution of the ‘Skip a Meal’ program.”
U of G students have taken part in the “Skip a Meal” initiative since 1997 and have contributed $160,000 in food for local organizations.
Tracey Marcheisch of the Guelph Food Bank said her organization has received bulk food donations of items in high need for several years through the Meal Exchange program. “Each year, the amount donated increases, and we are continually amazed at the caring and thoughtful nature of the students at the University of Guelph.”
Meal Exchange is a national student-run organization that aims to engage students from 45 Canadian campuses in solving the problem of hunger in their communities. For more information about the Meal Exchange program, visit www.uoguelph.ca/~meal or contact Abraham at (519) 824-4120, Ext. 58212, or email@example.com.
For media questions, contact Communications and Public Affairs: Lori Bona Hunt (519) 824-4120, Ext. 53338, or Rachelle Cooper, Ext. 56982.