By Tristan Marks
The 31st annual Lions Food Drive is just around the corner.
Volunteers will go front porch to front porch starting at 8 a.m. on Sept. 19 gathering food and supply donations for Community Care of West Niagara (CCWN). Sorting will be done at Great Lakes Christian High School.
Additionally, there will be a contactless drive-through drop off at the Lincoln Community Centre 9 to 11 a.m.
All of this is timely for CCWN, who have seen a 70% decrease in donations over the course of the COVID pandemic.
“This event usually fills our food bank for the entire year,” explained CCWN fundraising coordinator Lynda O’Donnell. “Because this is supposed to last us all year, we’ll need everything we can get.”
As with every year, the Beamsville & District Lions Club will be directing the event.
“This is our most important charity event of the year,” said Lion Club food drive chair John Tutecky.
“We’re quite fortunate to have a generous community here, so people are doing what they can.”
Last year, CCWn and the Lions Club set a goal to raise 3000 kg of food and supplies. This year things are different due to the pressure COVID has put on the community in general.
“Our goal for 2020 is to have a food drive and collect as much as we can this year,” said O’Donnell.
“Community support is all we’re asking for.”
This year’s donation “wishlist” includes:
- Salmon, sardines and canned fish;
- Flakes of ham, turkey, chicken and corned beef;
- Chunky & cream soups;
- Canned fruit, applesauce and fruit snacks;
- Condiments, sauces;
Cake muffin & pancake mix;
- Cereal, cookies & crackers;
- Jams, jellies, peanut butter;
- Regular tea, instant coffee, juice boxes;
- Snack packs pudding and Jell-O;
- Small bags of flour, sugar, brown sugar;
CCWN and the Lions are also looking for ‘street captains’ to help raise awareness for the event in their neighbourhood and perhaps collect food from their street to help pick-up volunteers finish their job smoothly and safely. As a COVID precaution, collection volunteers are expected to work on their own or with members of their social circle.
This means that many more volunteers will be needed to work smaller routes to keep the collection process smooth. Additionally, volunteers are always welcome at the sorting locations.
Those who wish to be a street captain or volunteer can sign up at communitycarewn.ca on the ‘Events’ page.