SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Xenia von Wedel, Peter Silva, Glenn Rossman, Ava Smith, Elizabeth White

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Food Banks Canada urges Canadians to put food banks on their holiday gift giving lists

Simple ways to help make the holidays a little jollier for those in need

TORONTO, Dec. 5, 2012 /CNW/ - Recently announced statistics from Food Banks Canada's HungerCount 2012 report, informed Canadians that 882,000 individuals turned to a food bank each month for help this year - and more than 339,000 (38%) of those assisted are children. The holiday season is a time when everyone can provide a helping hand to those in need across the country and Food Banks Canada and its partners are making it easy to do this.

"We know that it's more difficult for people in need during the holiday season when many cannot afford the extras that often can make the holidays so special," says Katharine Schmidt, Executive Director, of Food Banks Canada. "Food Banks Canada is encouraging Canadians to dig a bit deeper and share the holiday spirit with others by participating in our partner campaigns."

Food Banks Canada in partnership with some of their partners is suggesting a number of simple ways for Canadians to help those in need during the holiday season:

Add to your shopping cart at participating Loblaw Companies Limited corporate and franchise banner stores, offer support to the Extra Helping National Food Drive. Consider picking up the top five most needed items highlighted by Extra Helping™ signs on store shelves and place them in the donation bins in-store, or donate funds at the checkout to help those in need -  through to December 13, 2012 across Canada and until the 24th in Quebec.

Cast a vote for your local food bank in the Kraft Food for Families online campaign. Visit www.kraftfoodforfamilies.ca and add your name - once a day, every day until December 31, 2012 and help Kraft donate up to $125,000 to food banks across Canada.

Make Some Change by donating your spare change to Food Banks Canada when visiting your local 7-Eleven. Food Banks Canada coin boxes are on the counters of 7-Eleven stores across the country to December 31.

Enjoy holiday music for a cause by downloading and sharing with your friends original Carols sung by Koodo Mobile's very own Mini-Muchacho. For each download and share, Koodo will make a donation to Food Banks Canada.

Make a donation: Individuals are also encouraged to donate directly to Food Banks Canada to support its work in finding solutions to hunger. For every dollar donated, Food Banks Canada can acquire and share $20 worth of food. You can make an online donation at: www.foodbankscanada.ca. or act locally by donating, time, funds or food directly to a community food bank.

For more information on Food Banks Canada and its partner campaigns visit the partner campaigns page at www.foodbankscanada.ca

About Food Banks Canada

Food Banks Canada is the national charitable organization representing the food bank community across Canada. Our Members, Affiliate Member food banks, and their respective agencies serve approximately 85% of people accessing emergency food programs nationwide. Our mission is to meet the short-term need for food and find long-term solutions to reduce hunger. Please visit www.foodbankscanada.ca for more information.

SOURCE Food Banks Canada

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