Over $253K donated so far to Make the Season Kind campaign in support of Harvest Manitoba

On Friday, CBC Manitoba hosted a day of live events to raise money for Harvest Manitoba. Donations are still welcome. To donate, you can drop off food items at Harvest Manitoba at 1085 Winnipeg Ave. or give online at HarvestManitoba.ca/CBC until the evening of Sunday, Dec. 5.


CBC Manitoba’s annual charity drive in support of Harvest Manitoba has raised more than $253,000 so far for food banks in the province. 

The Make the Season Kind campaign kicked off Friday morning, with a full day of programming and music.

By 6:55 p.m. Saturday, $253,002 had been raised for Harvest Manitoba.

Last year’s campaign raised more than $300,000 in support of the organization, which feeds close to 80,000 Manitobans every month.

Harvest Manitoba says the number of Manitobans using a food bank for the first time is spiking.

In November alone, they signed up nearly 500 new clients — double the number last year. 

Harvest Manitoba president and CEO Vince Barletta said many people are telling them they’re struggling more than ever due to a combination of rising food prices, housing costs and inflation. 

“Many people who perhaps have never used Harvest food bank services before or haven’t used them for a very long time are needing to come here to get food support because they simply can’t make ends meet,” he told Information Radio host Marcy Markusa.

Some groups are in need of food bank support more than others.

Harvest Manitoba did a questionnaire with nearly 400 clients in October and November 2020, asking 67 questions about their demographics, income, health and food insecurity.

More than 80 per cent reported making less than $20,000 a year. Two-thirds of food bank users were women, and more than one-third were Indigenous.

Only 13 per cent of respondents who use food banks were employed. The top reasons they said they couldn’t work were illness, disability, age or because they are caregivers.

Barletta knows a client who has used food bank services for several years after being injured on the job and being forced onto a disability pension. 

With only $1,300/month in income, the client is left with only $110 for groceries after his rent and bills are paid, Barletta said.

“That’s $28 a week.… That’s less money than many people would spend on one dinner in a restaurant,” he said.

“So that’s the reality of people who live in poverty in Manitoba and who are food insecure.”

How to give

There are two ways you can still donate this year:

  1. Donate online at HarvestManitoba.ca/CBC until Dec. 5.

  2. Drop off food items at Harvest Manitoba, 1085 Winnipeg Ave.

Thanks to the generous support of an anonymous donor, all donations will be matched up to $100,000. 

If you’re donating food, here are the top 10 food items that Harvest Manitoba needs:

  • Canned fruit.
  • Canned soup/stew.
  • Canned tuna.
  • Canned vegetables.
  • Pasta.
  • Pasta sauce.
  • Rice.
  • Peanut butter.
  • Baby formula/food.
  • Instant oatmeal.

For more information, go to www.cbc.ca/bekindmb

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