Prior to COVID-19, the Emergency Services Food Drive was Community Connections Food Bank’s largest annual initiative to raise food donations and bring awareness to hunger within the community. After two years off, the event is finally returning, according to a Community Connections press release.
For one night only on Tuesday, September 13, Emergency Service crews will team up with local groups and take to the streets to fight back against hunger. This door-to-door campaign, accompanied by lights and sirens, helps to fill our shelves for the upcoming months.
“Each year, 25% of food for the entire year is raised during this important food drive; we can’t do this without our community,” Community Connections staff said in the press release.
Community Connections’ Food Bank provides food for over 300 local households each year – 30% of recipients are children. Food insecurity is a harsh reality for many in Revelstoke, and the need is increasing with rising inflation. Those who struggle financially tend to be more severely affected and for longer periods by economic trends and crises like a pandemic. Community Connections says they see many families and individuals who are working hard, or are unable to work, trying to make ends meet while the cost of living has risen dramatically in recent months. According to Global News, food prices have risen 9% since this time last year.
Community Connections’ staff say the rise in the cost of food impacts clients and the amount of food they can purchase for the food bank. The food bank relies solely on grant funding and donations, both monetary and food. Community Connections purchase a large portion of the foods distributed and say they are stretching funding as best they can.
The press release states that despite boasting a beautiful new space to operate the food bank, the funding that made construction possible is not related to food purchasing funds.
Diet-related illness is on the rise, especially in lower-income populations who frequent food banks, write Community Connection staff in the release. They say, in order to prioritize healthy offerings, there is a “wish list” of food items that are most needed. Additionally, financial donations are welcomed and will be used to purchase healthy, perishable foods such as fresh vegetables, fruit, meat and dairy, using local suppliers as much as possible.
Community Connections asks that all food items be in good condition: nothing that is past its best before date, no dented or damaged cans, and no unlabelled items, please. The most needed items are:
- Canned tomatoes
- Canned vegetables
- Canned fruit
- Dried and/or canned soup
- Pasta and sauces
- Canned tuna and salmon
- Peanut butter and other nut butter
- Rice and grains
- Personal care items – bathroom tissue, soap, toothpaste, shampoo etc.
- Pet food
Note: The food bank cannot accept home canned products or items that have been partially used.
“This food drive utilizes hundreds of volunteers. Rally your friends, family, or team to help us collect donations on September 13th. If you will be away during the event or have been missed, please drop off food donations at Save-On-Foods in our donation bin or at our Outreach Building (416 2nd Street St West) Monday to Friday during office hours,” writes Community Connections staff in the press release.
In addition to the door-to-door campaign, Save-On-Foods & Southside Market accept $2 donations at their tills year-round; ask a cashier to add it to your grocery bill to help the cause. Consider becoming a monthly donor – register on the Community Connections website.
Listen for the sirens, raid your cupboards and give food to help feed those in need!
For more information or to see how you can get involved, please visit Community Connections’ Facebook page or call 250-837-2920.