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Increasing number of seniors using food banks

While food banks continue to struggle with higher food costs, service providers in Sault Ste. Marie are noticing a growing number of seniors are relying on food donations. However, one such provider says the need among seniors goes beyond food.

In addition to addiction support services, Save Our Young Adults – or SOYA – also operates a food bank out of its depot.

SOYA founder Connie Raynor-Elliott told CTV News more and more seniors are showing up at the door.

"They live on fixed incomes and they have a lot of pride," said Raynor-Elliott, who added that seniors often have different dietary needs and are unable to eat certain foods.

The group is also finding that some seniors are also unable to afford other essentials.

"Ensure – look at the cost of that stuff," she said.

"Donations? Next to nothing for Ensure. When it comes to incontinence, like Poise, diapers. Our babies get diapers, our seniors need them too and the cost of them is ridiculous."

Donna Hilsinger is a former city councillor and a local business operator, who regularly makes donations to SOYA. She said those who are able, must continue to donate.

"Fixed income is exactly that, and people have to make decisions on ‘do I eat? Or do I share with my family?'" said Hilsinger.

"I just think it's important to give where we can."

Meantime, SOYA is looking for senior-friendly food donations such as nutritional shakes and softer, easy to chew food. They're also looking for incontinence products.

For more information on SOYA’s activities, visit their Facebook page. Top Stories

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