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Canadian government to match donations for famine response

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Canadian Foodgrains Bank hunger response. PHOTO: CFGB/Amanda Thorsteinsson

The Government of Canada will match donations from individual Canadians in response to severe food crises in Somalia, Nigeria, South Sudan, Yemen and surrounding regions dollar-for-dollar through its new Famine Relief Fund.

The announcement was made May 29, 2017, in Ottawa by the Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, Minister of International Development.

The fund is retroactive to March 17, 2017, and runs until June 30, 2017.

“Canadians have always demonstrated great compassion when it comes to humanitarian crises,” she said. “Together, we can make a difference and bring relief to people who need urgent help.”

Famine has been declared in parts of South Sudan, while people in Yemen, Nigeria and Somalia are suffering from hunger so severe that famine may be declared there as well.

Donations eligible for the match must be given to registered Canadian charities, such as Canadian Foodgrains Bank.

Through its members, the Foodgrains Bank has provided over $2.5 million worth of assistance to over 72,000 people in Somalia, Nigeria and South Sudan since January 2017.

“The incredible number of people affected by such severe hunger right now is deeply troubling,” says Foodgrains Bank executive director Jim Cornelius.

“I hope the match from the Canadian government will spur many more Canadians to donate to help people who are suffering.”

When a donation is made to the Foodgrains Bank’s Famine Appeal, the Government of Canada will match that amount on a 1:1 basis.

The government will then put their match into the Famine Relief Fund.

After June 30, 2017, organizations responding to these crises will be chosen by the government to receive those funds.

Donations to the Foodgrains Bank that are designated to these crises are also eligible to be matched on a 4:1 basis through our regular ongoing grant agreement with the Government of Canada.

Learn more about the hunger crisis facing Africa: http://foodgrainsbank.ca/campaigns/famine-appeal/

[Amanda Thorsteinsson, Canadian Foodgrains Bank communications coordinator

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