You can help hungry veterans. Find out how here

By Terry Inigo-Jones,
HSAA Communications

How is it that veterans who have served our country, and often risked their lives, end up hungry when they come home?

That’s a tough question – a bigger question than we, as individuals, can answer. We know Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) can play a role. Coming home to an economy in a slump can be a factor.

While we may not be able to fix all the issues facing our veterans, we can do something to help. That was the thinking of HSAA’s Young Workers Committee, which has chosen to join an annual food drive for veterans organized by the Canadian Legacy Project.

“The Canadian Legacy Project is a multifaceted organization that provides multiple supports to veterans in the community around Calgary,” says committee chair and HSAA board member Evan Stratichuk. “The organization does a food drive every November and also assists veterans with housing, employment, education and service dogs.”

The food drive officially runs November 1-15, but the committee will be starting things early at HSAA’s Labour Relations Conference in Calgary on Oct. 26-27. Members attending the conference are encouraged to bring non-perishable food donations. They will also be able to make cash donations, as well as buying tickets for a 50-50 draw.

However, the fund and food drive doesn’t end at the conference. Members will be able to drop of food donations at HSAA’s office in Edmonton and Calgary up until Nov. 15.

“The committee felt strongly about supporting those that have served in the past. They have served us and the deserve our support now,” says Stratichuk. “Many veterans are on fixed incomes and many are struggling with other factors. The Canadian Legacy Project helps make sure their pantries are filled and ensures funding is available to help with the other services.”

The project also appealed to committee members because it’s a local organization supporting members in Calgary, making it possible to see the positive effects donations have.

The veterans’ food drive has been running since 2007, bringing in enough food to fill two warehouses annually, which equates to about $300,000 in food donations. Donations of money are used to buy Calgary Co-Op food cards.

The Canadian Legacy Project also partners with the Calgary Board of Education (CBE), providing materials to all schools and organizing for representatives of the Calgary Poppy Fund and Veterans Motorcycle Club to visit schools to give presentations on Canada’s involvement in past and current missions. The school board encourages students to raise funds and food donations for the food drive.

For more information about the Canadian Legacy Project, please visit http://www.canadianlegacy.org/.

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