For his 40th birthday, Guelph resident Mitchell Tremblay took to GoFundMe to fight his battle against food insecurity.
Tremblay has been on OntarioWorks or the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) since he was 18. He lives on $9.70 a day, with only $1,169 a month for rent, food, clothes, toiletries and bills.
When he was a child, he was diagnosed with social anxiety, generalized anxiety (GAD), PTSD, Borderline and Histrionic personality disorders and major depressive disorder (MDD). After the trauma of living in slum apartments, violent landlords and homelessness, he developed agoraphobia and bulimia. This has left him unable to work.
On Sept 9, Tremblay turned 40 and surpassed his goal $1,000. As of Wednesday, it has reached $1,250. Tremblay said money like that would help him pay for food over the winter until April and May.
"For the math I did, it was $200 a month for five month, right up to April or May of next year," said Tremblay while on the Mike Farwell Show on Wednesday. He added that the winter months are the worst because ODSP recipients receive a double payment in December, which leaves them without income until the end of January.
As part of the 2022 Budget for Ontario, ODSP increased payments this month by five per cent, which Tremblay has called a "slap in the face." He said that the increase will do nothing because of inflation and the increase in rent. Moving forward, he does not see any solutions coming from either the federal or provincial government any time soon.
"I've seen politicians come and go for two decades," said Tremblay. "I just don't have any faith in any tier of government or any agency right now. I've just given up."
Anyone who would like to donate can visit Tremblay's GoFundMe by clicking here.