Sirens will sound for food­bank’s big ap­peal

South Waikato News - - Your Paper, Your Place - LUKE KIRKEBY

Toko­roa will be alive with the sound of sirens and gen­er­ous peo­ple this Sun­day for the Toko­roa Food­bank’s an­nual drive ap­peal.

Toko­roa Fire Sta­tion trucks and an am­bu­lance will ac­com­pany food­bank vol­un­teer’s as they drive around the streets of Toko­roa pick­ing up do­nated food items from lo­cals, from mid­day.

Toko­roa Food­bank sec­re­tary Viv Horne said vol­un­teer ve­hi­cles will be dis­play­ing of­fi­cial signs so peo­ple are not tricked into do­nat­ing food to ran­doms and the emer­gency ser­vice ve­hi­cles will also be sound­ing their sirens to alert peo­ple they are in their area through­out the drive.

Horne said there was al­ways a good re­sponse from lo­cals dur­ing the an­nual drive ap­peal.

‘‘There are nor­mally six or seven fire ap­pli­ances, an am­bu­lance, and 11 ve­hi­cles which have two or three run­ners each and they will cover the en­tire Toko­roa area through­out the af­ter­noon,’’ she said.

‘‘We are af­ter all kinds of food but peo­ple can also give money do­na­tions and it has been ex­cel­lent in pre­vi­ous years. We have a great com­mu­nity and we are re­ally thank­ful.’’

Vol­un­teer Tania Oneroa said the num­ber of peo­ple com­ing to the food­bank in need of food parcels was al­ways in­creas­ing.

‘‘We are up 150 peo­ple com­pared to this time last year so we have had a big in­crease and there is ob­vi­ously more need out there,’’ she said.

‘‘We are just very lucky that we have been able to feed these peo­ple but it wouldn’t be pos­si­ble with­out com­mu­nity sup­port.’’

Co­or­di­na­tor Ruth Ramea put the in­crease down to more fam­i­lies mov­ing to town and the high price of food.

‘‘We are even get­ting work­ers com­ing in here now be­cause even though they are work­ing they still can’t af­ford it, ‘‘she said.

‘‘Some peo­ple just need a lit­tle bit of as­sis­tance ev­ery now and again and that is what we are here for,’’ Horne said.

‘‘We are here to try and make life a lit­tle bit more easy.’’

She en­cour­aged ev­ery­one to give what they could dur­ing the ap­peal drive.

‘‘If peo­ple do miss it or they are go­ing away they can still drop food at the Toko­roa Food­bank in Roslin St which will be open on the day or at the Fire Sta­tion in Bridge St where there will be peo­ple all af­ter­noon un­til around 4pm,’’ she said.

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