Comal Y Canela has blown past its fundraising goals. They’ve now raised more than $7,000 of a $4,000 target.
Yasmen made a short thank-you video, saying, “the city of Toronto opened their hearts and provided me with the support and gave me the strength I needed to go on, and I’m very thankful and grateful. I will be able to feed another 100 families this week, and with your continued support, I will continue to do this until I no longer have the strength.”
You can help Comal Y Canela, the country’s best Mexican restaurant, raise money for its informal food bank, which hands out groceries no questions asked. If you have any money to spare, I know it will go a long way.
Every week, Yasmen De Leon helps 125 families with bags of dried goods, fruits and vegetables, and eggs, all handed out on a table outside her tiny restaurant.
Charmaine Baan, the organizer, has raised $1471 of $4000 so far.
BlogTO made a video about her food bank, and TVO has a wonderful article about Yasmen De Leon:
De Leon and her family left Mexico when she was five. They lived in the United States for four years before moving to Canada, where they spent six years waiting for refugee status.
“We went to a food bank,” she says. “And they couldn’t help us, because we didn’t have Canadian ID.”
The family went back to Mexico, then headed to Guatemala, where her father was murdered. Her mother packed her five children into the car and drove to Canada.
“My mother was a single mom of five kids,” De Leon says. “Many times, we had to go to the food bank. And, yet, she never denied anyone a plate of food. All my friends ate at our house. I remember, one time, we made peanut butter, pita, and Cheerio sandwiches. Because that’s all we had. If we see our neighbours like our children, then we would be much better as a society and a community.”
Holy smokes, the City of Toronto Archives has created something neat. OldTO has made a map of 30,000 old photographs from pre-Confederation to the present day. It’s really worth a click. There are many photos of Mount Dennis and Weston.
Don’t miss the comparative map of 1947 and the present.
With the apocalypse around the corner, I think yard owners should be allowed to raise chickens in Weston and Mount Dennis. The city already allows chickens in several other wards, but not here. I think we should change that.
There are many reasons to raise chickens. First, they’re hilariously cute. My mum had some for many years, and they were adorable.
In part they were hilarious because she didn’t raise any old tin-shed chickens; she raised heritage poultry. You can’t buy those eggs from a grocer, either because the egg cartel controls the market. Raising chickens could help maintain the market for endangered breeds.
Urban chickens produce eggs and fertilizer—and though I’m not going to tell you that you’ll save money, they are uniquely well suited to our neighbourhood because our large trees shade other food crops. We’re also quite safe from the scourge of my mum’s roost: foxes (though we do have the occasional coyote).
Of course, there’s a hurdle: we’re not one of the wards in which chickens are permitted. In the past, Frances Nunziata has been a vocal opponent, saying:
“If you want to have chickens, then buy a farm, go to a farm. You can’t have chickens in your backyard. Do we have to retrain our police officers to catch the chicken thieves that you’re going to have in the middle of the night? … We have enough to worry about.”
The city allows chickens in neighbouring wards, though, and they have extensive bylaws to ensure the birds aren’t disruptive to neighbours or inhumanely kept.
I’m told the Weston Lions Arena has the best french fries in Toronto—and I’m embarrassed to say I have never tried them. They must be good though, because the volunteer-run snack bar just donated $10,000 in proceeds to Weston Area Emergency Support, the local food bank, despite having the season cut short.
The gracious organizers have a ton of class, too. They wish
to thank Weston Minor Hockey League and GTA hockey families and teams for their support throughout our 70th season. All of our Snack Bar workers are Lions club or student volunteers. All sale proceeds from our coffee, pop and Famous Arena Fries are directed back into the community.