Riffel students have history of filling shelves
Jaxon Fuchs doesn’t have to rely on a local food bank to fill an empty stomach, but it doesn’t stop him from working hard to make sure the shelves are stocked for those who do.
“We have to help them out because you never know, in the future we could be in that position too,” said Fuchs.
In Grade 12 at Michael A. Riffel Catholic High School, Fuchs is one of hundreds of students and staff who raise thousands of pounds of food every year for the Regina Food Bank’s annual food drive.
As of Friday morning, Fuchs says the school had raised approximately 33,000 pounds of food — including cash donations where one dollar equals three pounds of food.
Over the past number of years, the school has donated more than 100,000 pounds of food — more than any other high school in the country according to a Regina Catholic Schools news release.
“The amount of energy and passion they have about helping out the food bank is completely humbling,” said interim CEO of the Regina Food Bank, Todd Sandin. “They’re so invested in what we do here.”
This year marks the Regina Food Bank’s 32nd Annual Food Drive. Their goal is to collect 350 tons of food throughout the month of October.
“The need for us every fall is difficult. During the summer months, our donation levels reach a really critical level,” said Sandin.
“This food drive allows us to stock the shelves well into the early spring months to make sure friends and neighbours in need in our community, that we can help them when they need help,” he added.
As of Friday morning, the food bank had collected 105 tons of food — about one third of their overall goal.
Sandin said the food drive usually brings in another third and the rest gets collected through physical or online donations throughout the rest of the month.
“We’re very confident that the city will step up again and show us why we’re in the greatest caring community,” he said.
To help reach their goal, the food bank distributed donation bags to Regina residents on Oct. 1 with the hope that residents will fill the bags with items to be picked up by youth volunteers on Oct. 12.
For those who didn’t receive a donation bag, any bag will do, just leave it on your doorstep for collection by local youth volunteers starting at 9:30 a.m. Saturday.
“I think the food bank is a great place and if you can help out ... I think that’s something that you should do,” said Sarah Morhart, also a Grade 12 student at Riffel.
For Morhart, giving to the food bank is a way to help those who aren’t as fortunate as herself.
“It’s nice to give stuff to them because they can’t always provide for themselves,” she said.
Morhart raised 500 pounds of food this year between cash donations and physical items and Fuchs has raised the equivalent of 1,000 pounds of food.
Food bank partner Access Communications will have volunteers out on the streets between 2 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. Saturday to collect any food donations that were missed during the citywide morning collection.
Residents can also call Access at 306-205-FOOD to have a volunteer come and collect their donation.
The top 10 most needed items include canned stew, one-litre juices, powdered milk, pork and beans, peanut butter, canned meat and fish, pasta products, soup, baby food, Enfalac and Similac.
Donations can also be made online through the Regina Food Bank’s Virtual Food Drive.
Grade 10 students at Michael A. Riffel High School Lucas Czinka, second from left, and Ethan Burns, second from right, were on hand Friday to help Regina Food Bank employees load barrels of donations destined for the tables of those in need.
Jaxon Fuchs and Sarah Morhart, Grade 12 students at Michael A. Riffel High School are among those who helped to gather a large food donation for the Regina Food Bank.