A timely boost for food bank
‘‘More people are struggling; more wage earners, and single income earners.’’
Ashburton’s community food bank shelves took a hammering over winter, and now they’re virtually empty.
So the timing couldn’t be better for a group of Ashburton businesses to come together and run a month-long food drive. The October food drive was the brainchild of Real Estate New Zealand Ashburton’s Trevor Hurley, but Port FM Ashburton, Countdown and Burger King loved the idea and joined in too, offering additional manpower, and incentives for people to give.
In an attempt to get younger people to give, Burger King is offering vouchers for free frozen drinks or a cheeseburger to those who donate. It’s hoped that incentive might help to encourage younger people to donate, or prompt them to tell their parents about it and get them donating, Hurley said.
For Salvation Army Community Food Bank manager Judith Lilley, the timing couldn’t be better. Winter’s been tough for many families, and the food bank shelves show that. They’re out of many things - pasta, rice, sugar, tea bags, coffee. Lilley said the high demand for the food bank could be down to many things; it could have been the longer than usual stand down at local meat works, or just the general economic climate at the moment.
‘‘More people are struggling; more wage earners, and single income earners,’’ Lilley said.
Every November, Ashburton County Lions runs its Toot for Tucker food drive and that ensures the food bank’s shelves are replenished in the lead up to Christmas, and this new food drive will fill the gaps until then, Lilley said. It means she won’t have to dip into her own limited food bank budget to buy goods as much.
Cash donations are also welcomed by the community food bank.
‘‘All these community services are pretty much getting more and more demand, and Judith’s been in the papers lately saying the food bank store is getting down so we all came up with this idea,’’ Hurley said.
The team behind the food drive is Trevor Hurley (Real Estate New Zealand Ashburton, Jane Kingan and LeVonne Watts (Port FM), Peter Breakwell (Countdown) and Vinay Sharma (Burger King). There are three drop off points Countdown Ashburton, Burger King Ashburton, and Port FM Local Ashburton.
Preparing for the food drive are (from left) Trevor Hurley, Jane Kingan, Judith Lilley, Peter Breakwell and LeVonne Watts. Judith Lilley, Salvation Army