Richmond residents asked to 'Chew On This'

International Day to Eradicate Poverty follows on from Homelessness Action Week in the city

With more than 1,500 people using the Richmond Food Bank every week — one-third of them being children — the people of Richmond are being asked to get involved with the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty on Oct. 17.

Volunteers in Richmond and across Canada will take to the streets to participate in the fourth annual “Chew On This!” campaign, which is organized by Dignity for All, an initiative co-led by Canada Without Poverty and Citizens for Public Justice, both registered charities.

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Outside Richmond’s Brighouse public library, volunteers will be handing out hundreds of brown paper bags containing a snack and information, prompting people to consider the realities of poverty and food insecurity.

“In Richmond, the cost of housing is so high that families are forced to use their food money to keep a roof over their heads,” said De Whalen, chair of the Richmond Poverty Response Committee.

“The result is they must attend the food bank and go to community meals to feed their families.”

The Food Bank now has six distribution days per week, including an evening distribution for families of the working poor. Five community meals per week in Richmond are oversubscribed and churches have to turn away people when the numbers go over 200 meals.

For more information, go online to or

Homelessness Action Week:

Finding and keeping housing that is affordable is a challenge for many residents across Metro Vancouver and, particularly, in Richmond.

Challenges due to the unavailability of affordable rental housing, inadequate income and limited support services are intensifying and negatively impact an increasing number of people throughout the city, Metro Vancouver and the Fraser Valley.

Homelessness Action Week, from Oct. 9 to 15, is a week of local and individual action to draw attention to the needs of those who face a constant struggle to find and keep a place they can afford.

During the week, there will be opportunities to volunteer at or donating to a Homelessness Action Week activity in Richmond.

Learn more about ways to support your local community in addressing homelessness by going online to or call 604-718-7735.

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© Richmond News

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