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Charities under strain as foreign students 'struggle' in Canada: Report
Charities under strain as foreign students 'struggle' in Canada: Report

Toronto, Feb 13 : With international students struggling amidst worsening housing and affordability issues in Canada, charities and support groups say they are under strain and have urged the government to step up support.

With nearly 500,000 international students living in the Greater Toronto Area, Khalsa Aid's national director Jindi Singh says charities are taking on more than their fair share of the load, Ottawa-based CBC news channel reported.  "We truly feel it's not really our role," Singh told the news outlet.  The Canadian branch of Khalsa Aid, helping over 8000 students struggling to access food, clothes, and shelter in cities across the country, says the government and post-secondary institutions should be doing more to support international students in need.  Jind said that the organisation has been presently receiving five calls a day from international students needing food, clothing, and shelter, especially from Brampton in Ontario province where he said that the situation is "acute". 

Since last June, Khalsa Aid has delivered over 5,000 grocery bags full of non-perishable food to students in this city, which attracts tens of thousands of international students annually. 

The president of the College Student Alliance, Azi Afousi, told CBC that student unions across Ontario have reported fielding more calls about housing struggles, adding that one of her colleagues shares a house with 15 other people.  International students contribute about CA$22 billion ($16.4 billion) annually to the Canadian economy and pay four times more tuition than domestic students.

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