Good things happening for Espanola’s Helping Hand Food Bank
This is the week Tim Hortons is holding its Smile Cookie Campaign, with the Helping Hand Food Bank (EHHFB) being the recipient of proceeds from the cookie sales. Sales take place from Sept. 11 to 17.
This is the 11th year the EHHFB has been in operation. Their catchment area is 320 square kilometres and growing. Each year the numbers of families they serve increases and it is only through donations from individuals and local businesses, coupled with fundraising efforts, that they are able to do so.
Susan Kryzanowski, president of the food bank, says last year they served
2,990 individuals, of which
848 were children. This year, they expect to serve over 3,100 people.
Hunger Awareness week this year is from Sept. 18 to 22. Its main purpose is to raise awareness about hunger in Canada and how to solve it. According to their website almost one in five people helped by a food bank is on a disability related income. Many just don’t have sufficient income to cover rent, bills and food. People living in poverty just can’t a balanced nutritious diet. Food banks do their best to fill the gap.
Part of the job of food banks is to take time to inform the public on the work they do to alleviate hunger. Even one individual can have a positive impact towards reducing hunger. This year, in recognition of hunger awareness, the food bank will hold an open house at their location, 87 Centre St., Unit C, on Sept. 19 from 1 to 4 p.m.
The Helping Hand Food Bank is open every Wednesday, from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. for those who require the service.
While Kryzanowski says the draw has been fairly steady over the summer, she expects with the onset of colder weather it will get busier. She points out that
100% of the money raised goes towards food and the sustainability of their present location. On their website the amount listed for the average grocery order is between $80 and
$100 and fixed monthly expenses total $1,600. The food bank is operated by 35 unpaid volunteers.
There are staple items that families need all of the time, with additional items that are required for a child’s school lunch. Items needed are listed on the website, www.espanolafoodbank.com. Ones that are of particular importance are canned fruit, such as peaches, pineapple and fruit cocktail; children’s snacks; jam; pasta and pasta sauce; canned tomatoes; canned fish and meat; and hot cereal. They also have a need for nonfood hygiene items such as toothpaste, toilet paper and bar soap.