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Kelowna residents help fill donation bins for local food banks

Kelowna students and store owners have run food drives for local food banks

It’s the time of year when everyone is thinking about food.

While most are doing holiday baking and thinking about their turkey feast, others are worrying about how to keep food on the table.

The Grade 7 class at Dr. Knox Middle School decided to help local food banks by raising funds and seeking food donations.

“We asked (the students) what they wanted to do, and they brainstormed that they wanted to do a food drive,” Chelan Hansen, a teacher at Dr. Knox, told Global News on Thursday.

READ MORE: The Greater Vancouver Food Bank has a ‘critical gap’ in volunteers. Here’s how you can help

“The kids made fliers, they went out into the community, left them at doors and today we collected.”

The students said they just wanted to do their part.

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“It probably means a lot for the people who need the food,” said Evan Friesen, a Dr. Knox student. “I’m proud because we’ll be helping out people who need it.”

Rising food costs putting a strain on food banks
Rising food costs putting a strain on food banks

These students aren’t the only ones in the community donating. Local grocery stores, such as Peter’s Independent Grocer, are running their own campaigns.

“We run what we call a brown bag event,” said Peter Boyd, Peter’s Independent Grocer operator.

The food bank lets the store know which items are most needed and the store bags them up in $5, $10, $20 and $25 bundles.

“The ($25 bundles) are especially popular because they’re for kids,” said Boyd. “They’re for babies; they have diapers and all the necessities that a new mom might need.”

Peter’s Independent Grocer is also part of a bigger food donation initiative, with all Loblaws and Real Canadian Superstores in B.C. 

READ MORE: Okanagan food bank expecting need for Christmas hamper to rise

The stores have an annual holiday food drive, which runs Nov. 29 to Dec. 24, with all the proceeds going to local food banks.

The Central Okanagan Food Bank says it appreciates the help.

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“The community is always so beautifully generous,” said Tami Williams, Central Okanagan Food Bank’s communication officer. “We are so incredibly grateful when people choose to donate to us.”

The Central Okanagan Food Bank serves about 4000 people a month and about 33 per cent of them are children under the age of 15.

Partners in Mission Food Bank looks to the community to close the fundraising gap
Partners in Mission Food Bank looks to the community to close the fundraising gap