Castlegar’s Community Harvest Food Bank is running low on food and funds. Increased demand and services coupled with fewer donations and higher food prices has resulted in the shortage that has organizers looking to the community for some extra support.
“The bottom line is, that we need money,” said food bank director Deb McIntosh. “If we are going to continue the programs we are providing, we need money. We depend 100 percent on the goodwill of others — residents, business and industry. This is our way of asking them for help and hopefully they will come through and we will have full bellies once again.”
The food bank provides about 200 hampers a month to clients and provides a hot meal to about 50 people three days a week. They also help with other needs in urgent situations including maintaining a hotel room as an emergency shelter.
Volunteer Andy Popoff said: “When you don’t have a full hamper and have to see the look on their faces, that is the sad part. That is a reality for us, the last couple of weeks we have run short.”
Community Harvest is completely run by volunteers; there are no paid staff or executives. All donations go directly to providing for those in need. St. David’s Anglican Church provides the space the food bank operates in for free.
Right now cash donations are preferred, McIntosh said, allowing organizers to buy items needed most to provide a complete hamper to clients. Garden produce and non-perishable food items are also welcome.
Donations can be made at the food bank, in the basement of St. David’s Anglican Church at 614 Christina Place on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. Donations can also be dropped of at the Station Museum.