One day at Covenant House can change a homeless kid’s life

TORONTO, Nov. 28, 2017 – their next meal is coming from, a life of hope and promise feels like an impossible dream. When given three nourishing meals a day, they can focus on building a future. That’s why Covenant House Toronto is promoting Giving Food Day as part of the Giving Tuesday campaign.

During the one-day cyber charity blitz, the agency is asking people to give $10 to cover the cost of food for a day that could change a homeless kid’s life. Donors can contribute at givingfoodday.ca.

Hunger is often a homeless youth’s main concern. Food can be the first thing they think of when they wake up in the morning and some go without food for days.

“The inability for homeless youth to get the food they need affects their dignity as well as their health,” says Chef John Lee, Covenant House’s culinary arts training program instructor. “By providing high quality meals every day that also satisfy cultural and dietary needs, we show youth that we are here to take care of them. That alone can be the start of a new beginning.”

When homeless youth arrive at Covenant House, day or night, they are asked if they want something to eat. Much like a family, staff and youth share three healthy, homemade meals and talk about the day’s activities.

“Food insecurity can plague a homeless youth for years,” adds Lee. “Once they are able to move past survival mode, we provide them with every possible opportunity to move forward with educational and vocational support as well as guidance and counselling.”

One homeless youth’s story can be seen here.

Covenant House Toronto is Canada’s largest agency serving at-risk, homeless and trafficked youth – as many as 250 youth daily. The agency provides 24/7 crisis shelter, transitional housing on site and in the community as well as education, counselling, health care, employment assistance, job training and aftercare.

To do all this, Covenant House relies on donors for more than 80 per cent of its $27-million annual operating budget.

For more information or to arrange an interview with Chef John Lee, please contact:

Michael Sheiner
Associate Manager, Public Relations
Covenant House Toronto
416-204-7094
msheiner@covenanthouse.ca

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Facts & Stats

There are 10,000 homeless youth in Toronto each year

Homeless youth are forty times more likely to die than other youth

70% of homeless youth are fleeing homes with abuse and neglect

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