Food drive this Saturday for local food bank

Volunteers gathering bags of donations Saturday morning

Empty bags are being dropped off around Hope this week, and with any luck they’ll be filled with food by the weekend.

It’s the annual BC Thanksgiving Food Drive, and it’s taking place on Saturday, Sept. 21. On that day, volunteers will be making their way around the town to gather up bags of groceries for the food bank. Every can of soup and box of macaroni donated will stay right here in Hope, say the organizers, and each year the drive gathers more than 6,000 pounds of food for locals in need.

The empty bags are being placed this week at every home in Hope, with an explanatory note and reminder of the food drive.

The note invites residents to donate whatever non-perishable food they can spare and put the bags on their porch for pick up by volunteers by Saturday, Sept. 21. The bags of food are collected by volunteers and dropped off at the local food banks where it is weighed and sorted.

The BC Thanksgiving Food Drive began in 2009 in the city of Burnaby to assist the local food bank. It has now expanded province wide and is able to assist dozens of community food banks serving more than 50 cities and many thousands of needy individuals and families throughout B.C.

There are a large number of people in society who struggle to obtain the necessities of life. In our own province, more than 100,000 people turn to local food banks each year in order to acquire the sustenance they need. Those who do come from the most vulnerable segments of our communities. Over half of all households that relay on food banks are families with children; half of these are headed by single parents. In total, almost 40 per cent of recipients of food bank assistance are under the age of 18. Other vulnerable groups include low wage earners, those with inadequate employment, and people on disability income assistance.

Last year, more than half a million pounds of food was collected with an estimated value of $1.3 million, essentially all in one day. The food drive is run without overhead, entirely by volunteers, individuals, organizations and businesses who donate their time, energy and resources.

For further information or questions, call Ron Moller at 604-377-4377.