Food Bank filled last year
The community of Merritt was generous as always last year, supplying the Nicola Valley Food Bank with food and money to ensure that those less fortunate have something to eat on their tables.
In addition, the Food Bank through its Christmas Hamper program was able to supply over 300 families and individuals with gifts and Christmas meals this year.
“We have been really fortunate,” says the Food Bank’s Karen Flick. “Over the Christmas season people did donate generously and we did have a great Christmas.”
The Food Bank’s Adopt a Family program was also successful, with about 30 families finding sponsors.
This year Shaw Cable implemented a program, called Together is Amazing that had the media company tripling donations groups or organizations were able to raise for the Food Bank.
The hope was to collect over one million pounds of food, for the communities Shaw serves.
Flick attributes the continued support of Merritt’s Food Bank to the fact that it is such a close-knit community.
“I think people are realizing that there are a lot of people finding it hard right now and it may be because they know a lot of these families themselves that people are compelled to donate.”
Flick says that many of the people who utilize the food bank have jobs but cannot make ends meet with low paying employment.
“There are probably a lot more of the working poor who could come in but don’t because feel they don’t deserve it,” says Flick.
“When you have a family, I don’t care if there are one or two people working, it is hard to make it to the end of the month.”
“People think in January the hump is over, but January, February and March are just as bad if not worse because people are trying to get over the debts they might have incurred over Christmas time.”
To qualify for assistance from the Nicola Valley and District Food Bank a potential recipient must show a proof of income, proof of address, a rent receipt and care cards for everyone living in a household.
“If someone is passing through town and their car breaks down we are not going to deny them a bag of groceries though,” said Flick.
Flick would like to thank all of the volunteers who have helped over the year that continue to make Merritt such an outstanding community to live in.