The Mustard Seed is calling on Calgary Co-op shoppers to help make sure families in need can enjoy a festive feast this holiday season at the Turkey Ham Jam.
“We know how expensive that meal is, so this is something really special that people don’t have to choose between a meal and gifts for their kids,” events coordinator Amanda Stephenson said.
The annual event collects donations to build Christmas hampers for less-fortunate families, so while shoppers are picking up their Christmas turkey, The Mustard Seed is hoping they’ll throw an extra one in their cart to be donated.
The Turkey Ham Jam is a one-day event taking place at six different Co-op locations around the city and as its name indicates, The Mustard Seed isn’t just accepting turkeys.
“People can donate any turkey, ham or chicken,” Stephenson said. “So they can just come to the meat department at those Co-ops, pick out whatever they like with their family, ring it through at the cash register and drop it back off.
“It’s kind of nice to give something that they can do as a family — something interactive, where they can pick something out. The kids always want to pick out the biggest turkey of course!”
Participating Co-ops will also accept cash donations or customers can purchase a $10 voucher which The Mustard Seed will use to cover the costs of all the fixings needed to make each Christmas meal complete.
“When customers come in and they realize it’s the Turkey Ham Jam with The Mustard Seed, they get excited,” said Kurt Kadatz with Calgary Co-op.
“They can give back, they can do their own shopping and then do some shopping for those who are a little less fortunate,” Kadatz said.
Stephenson said The Mustard Seed is hoping to collect enough meat products to feed 600 families.
“We have different neighbourhood hubs where we’re connecting with families through homework clubs and counselling and advocacy, so those families in some of the lower-income neighbourhoods in Calgary will be the ones receiving these hampers,” she added.
Stephenson said if they get more than is needed, The Mustard Seed will pass anything on to partner agencies like the Calgary Food Bank.
The Mustard Seed volunteers will be accepting turkey, ham and chicken donations at select Co-op locations starting at 10 a.m. Saturday through to 5 p.m. on Dec. 14.