Help feed the Okanagan this Saturday with a Valley-wide food drive.
The Junior Chamber International (JCI) Valleydrive will donate collected food items gathered from Save-On-Foods stores across the Okanagan Valley to the Lake Country and Kelowna food banks.
JCI members will also be stationed at the Costco in Kelowna during the drive which takes place Saturday, March 24 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
“We’ll have a top 10 list that we’ll be handing out to everyone that comes through. At the moment it’s going to be fruits and veggies,” said organizer Cody Pollard, with JCI Kelowna.
There is no goal with the amount of food collected and lists will be given to customers for what’s in need for the spring season.
“Truthfully if we get 10 pounds of food donated that would be an accomplishment in my mind. Anything and everything helps,” said Pollard.
JCI has put on smaller fundraisers in the past, but this will be the first time it will hold an event on this scale, which stretches from Vernon to Penticton.
“Hopefully people are willing to help us try and end hunger here,” said Pollard.
The Central Okanagan Community Food Bank serves 4,000 people, many of whom are children.
“There are a lot of kids involved in that. The food bank does a lot of good work to make sure kids are not going to school hungry, and this is typically a down time for the food bank,” he said.
The Lake Country Food Bank serves 930 people.
This is generally the time food banks run out of food, “so a drive at this time is a really wonderful time,” said manager Joy Haxton.
Demand remains high for meals in a can, cans that can be opened without a can opener, gluten-free options and whole wheat options for those with celiacs disease or diabetes.
Can openers are also needed, said Haxton.
“This is a big push that is up and down the Valley, so that’s really impressive of JCI, that they organized such a big food drive, that’s really cool,” said Haxton.
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