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Edmonton’s ‘Can Man Dan’ camping out in support of food bank once again

Can Man Dan is once again doing what he does best.

Dan Johnstone, known to Edmontonians as Can Man Dan,  is spending part of his Christmas weekend, camping out at a local grocery store hoping to collect over 50,000 lbs. of non-perishable food for Edmonton’s Food Bank.

It’s a cause Johnstone has devoted the past 13 years to.

“It feels so good to see people donating,” Johnstone said. “As someone who used the food bank growing up– it’s nice to see the cycle going and going, some kid out there deserves to have a great Christmas.”

Johnstone is in the middle of a five-day, four-night campout outside two local Sobeys stores. Johnstone spent two nights at the Belmont Sobeys and is currently at the Southbrook Sobeys.

Edmonton’s Food Bank has an ambitious goal of raising $4 million and 300,000 kilograms of food during the 2023 Festive Campaign.

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So far, Johnstone said his campaign is off to a great start raising about $16,000. and 8,000 lbs of food.

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“So many Edmontonians are coming down and opening their wallets, opening their hearts and offering what they can,” Johnstone said.

“With the increased need for food support this year, it’s so important for our community to get involved and give back when possible,” said Johnstone.

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Edmonton’s Food Bank provides food to more than 34,000 people through our hamper programs every month. Edmonton’s Food Bank receives no core funding for food purchases or operations from any level of government and relies on the generosity of the community and food industry partners to assist those in need in Edmonton.

“We appreciate everything he does to raise the profile of Edmonton’s food bank,” said Marjorie Bencz, executive director of Edmonton’s Food Bank. “For the past 18 months, we’ve been struggling with keeping up with services for all the people we’re trying to serve. This time of year, we’re trying to make the hampers a little more festive by purchasing turkeys so that we can make this time of year a little more special for people.”

In November, Edmonton’s Food Bank served over 36,000 people.

“People continue to have a hard time making ends meet,” Bencz said.

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Edmontonians are being encouraged to drop by the Southbrook Sobeys location at 1109 James Mowatt Trail, SW until 6 p.m. on Christmas Eve and help Dan reach his goal.

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