Oct. 30, 2018

'Trick or Eat' volunteers ready to canvass UCalgary neighbours for food bank donations

Students and student groups interested in participating can register online until Halloween morning
The University of Calgary Meal Exchange chapter is ready to host its 10th annual Food Bank drive on Oct. 31.
The University of Calgary Meal Exchange chapter is ready to host its 10th annual Food Bank drive. Leadership and Student Engagement

This Halloween, you may be surprised when the trick-or-treaters at your door ask for food bank donations instead of candy. Teams of costumed university students participating in the 10th annual Trick or Eat event will canvass the neighbourhoods surrounding the University of Calgary campus asking for non-perishable food items. Food items will be divided between the Students’ Union Campus Food Bank and the Interfaith Food Bank.  

In 2017, 76 Trick or Eat participants brought in 1,238 pounds of food and raised $700. The Calgary Chapter Meal Exchange co-coordinators strongly encourage students to sign up to ensure a successful year. “I’ll take any excuse to dress up in a costume, especially if I am doing it for an amazing cause such as Trick or Eat,” says Calgary Chapter Meal Exchange co-coordinator Milana Leskovac. “We would love to see our campus community get together this year in a large number and help us grow this event.”

“We appreciate all the support that communities near the university — like Varsity, University Heights and Parkdale — have offered us over the years, and we would love to see this support continue. Residents can expect us on Oct. 31st, ready to pick up any and every non-perishable food item,” says Nabila Farid, SU vice-president student life. “Monetary donations are also greatly valued, as they go a long way in ensuring that fresh food and dairy cards are supplied in hampers.”

The SU Campus Food Bank provides emergency, seven-day food hampers to students and other members of the campus community. Since May 2013, demand for their services has increased by nearly 150 per cent. “As we continue to see an increase in the number of clients that utilize our services, it is essential for initiatives like Trick or Eat to continue running and collecting donations from the community. Combating food insecurity through this program ensures that the Students’ Union is dedicated to providing adequate meals for students, faculty, and alumni,” says Farid.

Trick or Eat is a partnership between the Leadership and Student Engagement office, which offers the University of Calgary Meal Exchange Chapter, and the SU Campus Food Bank. The food drive began in 2009.

This year, prizes will be given out to those with the best group costume and individual costume, in addition to prizes for most food donations, most monetary donations and draw prizes. Some of the prizes include a one-month pass to YYC Cycle, a $25 Made by Marcus gift card, and two adult lift tickets to Sunshine Village Ski Resort in Banff.

Students and student groups interested in participating can register online until Halloween morning. Faculty, staff and students who would like to give, but do not live in nearby communities, are encouraged to bring monetary or food donations to the SU Campus Food Bank (MacEwan Student Centre 225) on Oct. 31.