Getting to know her tight-knit community further while lending a helping hand to those in need is what Vanderhoof resident Lesley Chaisson said she enjoys most of being involved with the BC Thanksgiving Food Drive.
The largest single-day food drive supporting local food banks will be taking place across B.C. on Saturday, Sept. 25.
In Vanderhoof, volunteers such as Chaisson and Rita Steffey will be distributing collection bags and donation stickers to homes throughout the area during the week of Sept. 20.
Residents can then fill the bag(s) with non-perishable food items and place it on their doorstep for pickup by 9:30 a.m. Sept. 25 by volunteers who will be stationed at the Co-op Food Store parking lot where they will sort and box the items for NeighbourLink.
Non-perishable food items can also be directly dropped off there as well as ACE Building Centre, P & H Supplies Ltd and Jim’s Your Independent Grocer.
Last year the food drive in Vanderhoof was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Although Chaisson could not recall precisely how much food was collected in 2019, she estimated it was more than 6,000 pounds and said they are hoping to beat that amount.
On their website, BC Thanksgiving Food Drive noted they would like to collect 600,000 pounds of food this year for local B.C. food banks.
Volunteer Steffey said this year would mark her first time helping coordinate the food drive in Vanderhoof.
She added that they’re hoping for even more community support this year, especially from the different churches, to take on pickup routes.
“I think it’s important to get the community together and just get as much food donations as we can to support our local food bank, NeighbourLink, and to help people in our community,” she said.
“It also helps us connect and unifies all of the members of the community and the churches.”
Specific items of need this year include canned meat/fish, rice, canned fruit and vegetables, pasta sauce, whole-wheat pasta, evaporated milk, peanut butter, baking needs and baby formula/food.