Ontario's food banks say: We can end hunger. Think about it.

    OAFB launches Thought for Food engagement campaign to reduce hunger and

    TORONTO, Sept. 13 /CNW/ - The Ontario Association of Food Banks (OAFB)
launched their Thought for Food engagement campaign today at the Centre for
Social Innovation in Toronto. The centerpiece of the campaign is a discussion
paper outlining the framework for a comprehensive poverty reduction plan in
Ontario. In addition, the OAFB is also launching a number of engagement
initiatives throughout the provincial election campaign and beyond in order to
ignite discussion and action on hunger and poverty in Ontario.
    "Hundreds of thousands of Ontarians are served by food banks every
month," said Adam Spence, Executive Director of the OAFB. "We need to engage
the public and our political leaders in an open, inclusive, and informed
discussion in the election campaign and beyond."
    Thought for Food engagement initiatives include a Fall Lecture Series
taking place on university campuses across the province, low-income voter
engagement activities, an all-party issue survey, online tools and resources,
and a gala event on Wednesday, November 14th at the Carlu in Toronto featuring
Stephen Lewis as the keynote speaker. The OAFB's ultimate goal is the
development and implementation of a comprehensive poverty reduction plan for
    The OAFB's Discussion Paper, Towards A New Perspective on Hunger and
Poverty, outlines a plan to reduce hunger and poverty, and is based on the
approaches of leading thinkers, nations, and other successful movements. The
OAFB makes the following recommendations for action:

        -  to understand poverty by introducing tools such as a low-income
           library and databank;
        -  to ensure Ontarians have the basics of life through more adequate
           and accessible income supports, an affordable housing strategy,
           child care re-investment, improved supplementary benefits,
           improved adult literacy and training programs, and a quality job
        -  to foster cooperation and collaboration through the creation of
           permanent government committees on hunger and poverty,
           collaborative development projects between social and
           environmental organizations, and targeted funding of academic
        -  to advance social enterprise through investment in social
           innovation incubators and the creation of a social investment
        -  to apply successful international poverty approaches including
           targeted development, asset-building programs, and poverty
           reduction measures and targets; and
        -  to get Ontarians engaged by promoting low-income voter engagement
           and initiating a youth domestic development program.

    "We need a comprehensive poverty reduction strategy with a commitment to
all low-income Ontarians, significant up-front investments in basic supports,
accountable measures and aggressive targets, and a new approach to hunger and
poverty," said Spence. "We can end hunger. Think about it."

    The Ontario Association of Food Banks (OAFB) is a network of over 100
food banks which includes communities across the province from Ottawa to
Windsor, and Niagara Falls to Thunder Bay. Over 330,000 Ontarians are served
by food banks every month. If you would like to find out more about the OAFB,
download the full version of the discussion paper, or learn more about the
campaign, please visit www.endhunger.ca.

For further information:

For further information: Adam Spence, Executive Director, Ontario
Association of Food Banks (OAFB), w: (416) 656-4100, c: (416) 543-0897; Sandy
Singers, Chair, Ontario Association of Food Banks and Executive Director,
Partners in Mission Food Bank, (Kingston), w: (613) 544-4534, c: (613)

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Ontario Association of Food Banks

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