Food Bank board member Jeremy Norton (left) and Executive Director Tristan Newsome want people to fill up green bags left on their doorsteps. PHOTO: Danny Macdonald
The spring food bank drive takes place April 16 to 19
Jeremy Norton is a director on the board of the Whitehorse Food Bank and the vice-president of the Christian Ministerial Association. According to Norton, the two drives are crucial pushes to restock the shelves at the Whitehorse Food Bank.
“This is one of the key drives for the food bank,” Norton said. “At this time of year, shelves are getting bare.”
This comes at a time when there is often an increase in demand on the food bank. The spring drive provides the food bank with enough stocked food to meet demand during the summer months.
“Summer isn’t necessarily just our community,” Norton explained. “The summer transient population starts to arrive and maybe don’t have a plan fully figured out. Or perhaps travellers get stuck.”
Norton also notes that the summer is also a down period for contributions. It’s the nature of short Yukon summers for Yukoners to seize every moment and they perhaps forget about things like contributions to the food bank.
“It’s summer and people get busy,” Norton said. “And perhaps they forget to donate to the foodbank during that time.”
And if you’re not sure what the food bank needs, they’ve set up some tools to help you out on their website.
“We’re supposed to encourage folks to go to the website, otherwise I might get in trouble,” Norton laughed. “If folks click on “Donate Food” link, there is a list of what the food bank needs.”
The spring food drive was started by Christian churches in Whitehorse and most of them have a dedicated route that they look after. Fourteen different churches participate and they are joined by the Boy Scouts of Canada and a non-denominational volunteer group who both have their own route. Norton noted that they still need volunteers to take on collection in several neighbourhoods around town including Marwell, Kopper King, Raven’s Ridge and Whistle Bend.
Norton is the pastor of the Mountainview Church, which has recently changed its name from the Whitehorse Baptist Church, and also feels that it’s important that residents understand why the churches and their congregations consider this a major part of their community contributions.
“It’s important that ‘why’ is explained,” Norton said. “Part of the reason is that we are following Jesus’ example. His example was caring for and feeding the poor, and we want to follow that.”
Individuals looking for more information, or looking to volunteer or donate, can visit the Whitehorse Food Bank website at www.WhitehorseFoodBank.ca or contact them via email at [email protected] or by phone at 867-393-2265.
What the Whitehorse Food Bank needs most:
Soups Vegetables Tomatoes or tomato sauce FruitMeat/fish (tuna, chicken, ham) Canned Beans
Pasta (375, 500, 900 g or larger) Mac and cheese Rice Peanut butter Cereal, hot or cold (large) Granola bars Soda crackers Sugar, flour
Juice (1 or 2 L) Coffee (ground), not flavoured Tea (herbal, regular)
Feminine hygiene products (pads, tampons) Toilet paper Diapers (all sizes) Depends (medium-large) Soap, toothpaste, toothbrushes, razors, shampoo
Things the food bank can’t use:
Homemade foods Opened Items Home pickled/canned goods Items containing alcohol Expired items (over 1 year)