COVID-19 saved the NLMA some expenses. Now it's donating $200K to Community Food Sharing Association

·2 min read

The group that represents doctors in Newfoundland and Labrador says it managed to save money on some expenses, and that extra $200,000 is going toward making sure people have enough to eat.

The Newfoundland and Labrador Medical Association's president-elect, Dr. Susan MacDonald, presented a $200,000 cheque Thursday morning to the Community Food Sharing Association.

"As physicians, it's a privilege to be able to provide care to meet the medical needs of our patients. And today it's a privilege to help those who may be struggling with food insecurity," said MacDonald.

COVID-19 changed the way the NLMA did business in 2020, much like other groups and organizations.

The building was closed for the most part, so utility costs were down. Travel expenses were dramatically reduced, too, says the association.

When the surplus was discovered, it was a unanimous decision to donate the funds, added MacDonald.

"We know that people in the lowest socio-economic groups often carry the largest burden of illness. And the risk increases in single-parent households and the families in need of social assistance."

The NLMA is funded entirely by membership fees, said MacDonald.

55 food banks will get a boost

The Community Food Sharing Association is a hub and distributor for numerous local food banks around Newfoundland and Labrador.

General manager Eg Walters says the size of the donation and the impact it will have cannot be overstated.

"It's hard to have the correct words to say 'thank you' to the Newfoundland and Labrador Medical Association for everything they do to help the less fortunate," he said.

"This donation will go as far north as Nain and as far west as Port aux Basques and every major food bank in between."

Fifty-five food banks will see supplies replenished.

CBC's FeedNL Day is one part of a broader campaign, Make the Season Kind, to support the association, which says the need has never been greater.

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