NEWS

Food bank in Pointe-Saint-Charles may close its doors

10/20/2014 09:23 EDT | Updated 12/20/2014 05:59 EST
La MaisonduPartaged'Youville, a food bank that’s been operating in Pointe-Saint-Charles for the last 30 years, says it may have to shut down due to rising operating costs and higher rent.

“We've been here for 30 years. We'd like to be here for 30 more...We have to find creative ways to get money,” said the food bank’s director Silvie Lavigne.

Lavigne said operating costs — including rent — are on the rise, while financial contributions have taken a dive.

In the past three months, Lavigne filled out 170 grant applications. Out of 50 responses, only one has been positive.

She said that’s bad news for the nearly 2,000 people who rely on its services.

“We're not only a food bank. We also have all kinds of activities to help those people to get out of a temporary situation, or a situation where they're sick,” said volunteer Nicole Sophie Viau.

The centre, which operates on a budget of $250,000, offers cooking classes, clothing donations and community programs — services that Lavigne considers are saving the government money.

“We keep people out of hospitals, and off the streets.”

On Monday, the centre learned it would be receiving a grant of $11,000 from MNA Marguerite Blais.

"If some people believe they can do something to help La Maison, I invite them to do it right now,” Blais said.

On Tuesday evening, the food bank’s board members will meet  to decide whether they can carry on or shut their doors right away.

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