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November 6, 2001
Food Action Awards salute community volunteers
  
Toronto's Food and Hunger Action Committee hosted the First Annual Food Action
Awards for Community Volunteers. The awards honoured more than 30 unsung heroes
who are dedicated to ensuring people across Toronto have access to safe,
nutritious and affordable food.

Winners included Bob Loptson, who was honoured for Lifetime Achievement, a
Grade 11 hospitality program, a public school student, a Boy Scout troop, a
76-year-old, and other people from all walks of life who share a commitment to
reducing hunger.

"The Food and Hunger Action Committee made many valuable recommendations in its
recent report, The Growing Season," said Councillor Pam McConnell, who
co-chairs the committee along with Councillor Chris Korwin-Kuczynski. "One
recommendation was that the City take notice and celebrate the work that is
already successful. It is critical that we build on what's already working to
ensure food security across the city."

Added Councillor Korwin-Kuczynski, "Having nourishing, affordable food is
something many of us take for granted. But it's not that easy for everyone, and
I am grateful that there are people out there who are working hard to make sure
this is the case. These awards were our chance to say that we know about and
appreciate the great work people are doing across the city."

Nominations for the awards were co-ordinated by Toronto Community and
Neighbourhood Services, which sent out nomination forms to more than 1,300
organizations across the city. The winners were selected by members of the Food
and Hunger Action Committee.

All community-based food programs were invited to nominate volunteers. Programs
included food production, pick-up and distribution, emergency food programs
such as food banks and pantries, outreach programs, community kitchens and
gardens, as well as innovative projects that strengthened the food security
system.

Plans are already underway for the second annual awards, which will continue to
celebrate the volunteers who are the lifeblood of many of Toronto's food
programs.


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