Dear Editor,

The Student Federation of the University of Ottawa (SFUO) Food Bank believes that students should not have to chose between buying textbooks and putting food on the table. Due to soaring tuition fees and a high cost of living, the SFUO Food Bank plays an essential role on our campus. However, we recognize that increased government funding for post-secondary education would alleviate the financial barriers faced by U of O students. Until society adequately funds post-secondary education, the SFUO Food Bank will keep fighting to improve food security on campus.

I am writing to the Fulcrum for one reason: the SFUO Food Bank needs your help! We are bursting at the seams with a surplus of food and need help giving that food away. We have promoted our service as much as possible, and yet, our shelves remain full. We think that we know why…

When students see a sign advertising “free pizza,” they stop in their tracks and run towards the scent of delicious mozzarella. However, students shy away from visiting the Food Bank due to their internalized stigma towards food banks.

Gee-Gees, we need your help. We challenge you to examine your own biases against food banks. We ask you to gently recommend our service to your friends. We even want you to consider visiting the Food Bank. It’s like shopping … except that we can give you things for FREE!

There is truly no shame in picking up eggs and a few boxes of pasta. We want you to cook a kick-ass spaghetti carbonara that feeds you the night before your big exam! We can give you the popcorn that fuels your next Netflix binge.

U of O students need to rally behind the de-stigmatization of food banks and the fight for increased food security. We need lower tuition fees and labour laws that benefit millennials. However, right now, we really just want you to come take the excess quinoa off our hands. Seriously, we have way too much quinoa.

—Kathryn LeBlanc, event supervisor at the SFUO food bank and incoming SFUO vice-president of services and communications