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Global Okanagan goes online for annual food bank fundraiser amid pandemic

On Friday June 26, Global Okanagan Television will hold its Foodbank Friday fundraiser, a one-day online event that will benefit  local food banks.
On Friday June 26, Global Okanagan Television will hold its Foodbank Friday fundraiser, a one-day online event that will benefit local food banks. Global News

Supporting local food banks has been a cause near and dear to the heart of Global Okanagan for many years.

The efforts include the long-running Good News Bears campaign and, recently, the Your Okanagan Calendar campaign.

READ MORE: Global Okanagan calendar campaign launches in support of local food banks

Global Okanagan has also hosted open houses at the TV station, as well as drive-thru food fundraisers in recent years, all in an effort to support food banks.

But this year, the pandemic has forced the station to do things a little differently.

“In past years, we were able to do drop-in events to help raise money and food for local food banks,” said Chris Sobon, Global Okanagan’s news manager.

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“We are now unable to do in-person events, but we still wanted to help, so we decide the best way to move forward was by going online.”

On Friday, June 26, Global Okanagan will host its online donation fundraiser.

Called Food Bank Friday, the event is asking donors to go online and make a donation to the food bank of their choice in the Okanagan.

“Since the COVID-19 shutdown has impacted so many people, we felt it was more important than ever to help local food banks, which have seen a tremendous increase in demand for services,” Sobon said.

READ MORE: ‘There’s never been such a demand’: Central Okanagan Food Bank’s urgent appeal for help

Food banks have been seeing a record number of clients accessing services since the pandemic began.

The Central Okanagan food bank alone has seen a 21 per cent increase in the number of households reaching out for help.

Global Okanagan has partnered with Food Banks B.C., the umbrella organization for food banks throughout the province, to provide a secure online donation link for donors to use.

The link is available on Global Okanagan’s website under the My Community section.

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There will be about 20 local food banks that donors will be able to donate to, all the way from Revelstoke to Osoyoos.

“You can help families, many who need a helping hand for the first time ever, to get through these unprecedented times,” Sobon said.

Global Okanagan has raised more than $4 million for local food banks since 1989.