For the last month, Eric Andrews and the team at The Co-operators in Bradford have been collecting donations for the Helping Hand Food Bank. Yesterday, they made the delivery, just in time for Christmas.
“We’ve chosen to support the Helping Hand Food Bank because no one should have to face their day on an empty stomach,” said Eric Andrews of The Co-operators in Bradford.
Last year “The Co-Operators gave $8.8 million back to their local communities. This is just a small way that we can help with that,” said Vanessa Johnson, the organizer behind The Co-Operators’ food drive.
Every year, as more people move into the BWG area, the need for help increases.
This year, The Helping Hand Food Bank is giving away approximately 180 Christmas hampers, each worth about $150.
“We buy everything that goes into the hamper because every hamper is the same,” said Alvin Belanger, treasurer for the food bank.
“We use a portion of the cash donations that are received throughout the year to fund the hampers,” he continued.
“We have so many clients, there’s been such a large increase (in the number of people the food bank is helping). We always need donations. It’s not only now, for Christmas. We’re here all year,” said Belanger.
Food banks, in general, get a big rush for the holidays, but donations tend to drop off after that.
“We’ve started this for Christmas, but we’re going to continue with a donation bin in the office throughout the year,” said Johnson.
“It’s not just a Christmas and Thanksgiving that people need food. If someone wants to make a donation, they can come by the office and we’ll be happy to help them do that.”