November 18, 2018

Registration is open for one of the most recognizable events in Waterloo Region — the 2019 CANstruction at The Food Bank of Waterloo Region.

Celebrating its 12th year, the annual event puts companies and organizations to the test by having them build impressive structures using cans, boxes, jars, and non-perishable food items. The event raises food, funds, and awareness in the fight to end hunger.

According to the food bank, Waterloo Region CANstruction has raised enough food and funds to provide more than one million meals since 2008. Competing organizations have the opportunity to focus on teamwork while gaining a positive profile in the community by participating. The registration deadline for the event is Dec. 31.

“CANstruction Waterloo Region raises awareness about food insecurity in Waterloo Region through community engagement and creating conversations about the one in 20 households in need of food assistance.” said Jennifer Judges, a communications specialist for the region’s food bank. “Each participating team purchases all of the non-perishable food items used in their structures. The items are then donated to The Food Bank of Waterloo Region, where they are sorted and distributed to more than 100 community programs and agencies to help those in need of food support.” 

Hunger be “dammed.” Photo courtesy of Waterloo Region CANstruction

According to the Food Banks Canada, “13 per cent of Canadians live in a state of food insecurity, which means they do not have reliable access to adequate amounts of safe, good-quality, nutritious food. The root cause of hunger in Canada is low income, which consistently affects more than four million Canadians at any given time.

“Food banks are an important method of addressing this need. Each month, more than 850,000 people turn to food banks for help; more than one-third are children and youth. The people who visit food banks come from all backgrounds. They include families with children, employed people whose low wages do not cover basic living essentials, individuals on social assistance, and Canadians living on a fixed income, including seniors and people with disabilities.”

CANstruction has successfully brought awareness to help end the struggle of universal hunger throughout the world. Cities such as New York, Berlin and Mexico City have all participated in the fight to end hunger by participating in CANstruction.  

“Fortifying against hunger” was the winner of the People’s Choice Award during the 2017 CANstruction

“Not everyone is able to put food on the table. In Waterloo Region, more than 34,000 people are forced to make impossible choices about how to provide for their families. Pay bills or buy groceries. Dental care or buy groceries,”  wrote chief executive officer Wendi Campbell in a statement. “The Community Food Assistance Network – anchored by two food banks in Waterloo Region – supports more than 100 programs and agencies and distributed more than 4 million pounds last year. There are many stories in our community that remind us that the work we do is a team effort.”

The event will run March 9-17, 2019, at Conestoga Mall in Waterloo, Ont. If you have any questions about the 2019 CANstruction Waterloo Region, you can contact the food bank at 519-743-5576 or via email. Donations can be accepted online. Registration can be done online in a few easy and fast steps or through contact with Becky Riley, the community events coordinator for CANstruction 2019.

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