Gordon Oliver of the B.C Thanksgiving Food Drive speak about the upcoming collection as (left to right) Central Okanagan Food Bank executive director Lenetta Parry, and the mayors of Kelowna and West Kelowna, Colin Basran and Doug Findlater look on.—Image credit: Alistair Waters/Capital News

Flooding and fires put Central Okanagan food bank donations ‘way behind’

The Central Okanagan Food Bank in Kelowna has collected half as much food as normal this summer.

This summer’s floods and fires in the Central Okanagan have had a dramatic impact on donations to the local food bank.

According to Lenetta Parry, executive director of the Central Okanagan Food Bank, during a typical summer her organization collects about 200,000 pounds of food to be distributed in Kelowna and West Kelowna to those in need. But this summer, that number has plummeted to about 100,000 pounds.

And the biggest reason, according to Parry, is the recent series of local disasters.

“So this year there’s an added sense of emergency,” said Parry, announcing the seventh annual Thanksgiving Food Drive, slated to take place across B.C., including in the Central Okanagan, Sept. 11 to 16.

“As you know, this year our area has been affected by fires and flooding. So our team has been aiding evacuees, working with other food banks to make sure resources are where they’re needed and supporting local agencies in their fire and flood relief efforts.”

As a result, she said, the food bank is “way behind” in food donation collections.

As a result, instead of the usual 50,000 pounds of food that the annual B.C. Thanksgiving Food Drive collects in this area each September, a “lofty” goal of 150,000 pounds of food has been set.

“There is a real need out there,” said Gordon Oliver, spokesman for the food drive.

That message was echoed by the mayors of Kelowna and West Kelowna, who were on hand to help support the upcoming food drive.

Both Colin Basran and Doug Findlater praised the work of the local food bank, noting the staggering need and how easy it will be to donate food items during the food drive.

From Sept. 11 to 15, an army of volunteers will fan out across the two cities, and leave bags on front doors with information attached about the drive, the most needed food items and instructions about how to participate.

Residents are asked to put non-perishable food items in the bags and rehang the bags on their doors. On Sept. 16, the volunteers will return and collect the filed bags.

This year, to help people in multi-family buildings and gated communities participate, special drop-off locations will be set up at the Save-On Foods store in Orchard Plaza and at the Costco store in Kelowna, as well as at the West Kelowna Save-On Foods store in Westbank.

In addition, leading up to the Sept. 16 collection, volunteers at the Kelowna food bank’s Ellis Street depot and the West Kelowna depot on Churchill Road in Westbank will also accept donations for the Thanksgiving Food Drive.

All the food collected in each community will stay in the community where it was donated.

Just Posted

Penticton Lakers curling team headed to high school provincials

Penticton Secondary School Lakers boys curling team will represent the zone at provincials

Premium electric rate for home-based businesses

After more than three decades, home businesses pay the same power rate as other Penticton residents

Penticton cyclist takes city to court over injuries

The man claims a depression in the road caused a crash, resulting in rib and facial fractures

Slayer adds Penticton to North American tour

Slayer adds the South Okanagan Events Centre as a stop on their last world tour

Tagger causes $30,000 damage

Penticton looking for help finding person responsible for graffiti

Tsunami warnings 101: Canada

Here are some things to know about tsunami alerts in Canada and how they work

Three sisters will curl together as Team B.C. at Tournament of Hearts

Nanaimo’s Kesa, Marika and Kalia Van Osch, along with teammate Amy Gibson, start play Jan. 27

Castlegar homicide victim identified

The victim was 38-year-old Jordan Workman of Castlegar, B.C.

B.C. Liberal leadership candidates get one last prime-time pitch

Leadership campaign to be decided in Feb. 3 vote

Team chaplain reflects on time with Silverbacks

Kenny Toews served as a mentor and spiritual leader to the team for six seasons

Drawings connect autistic student with the world

Leifen Mitchell-Banks creates colourful cartoon characters at Salmon Arm Secondary.

Andrew Scheer on trade, Trump and Trudeau

Canada’s Conservative leader begins three-day visit to B.C.

10 Safeways in Lower Mainland to close, union says

Locations in Vancouver, Burnaby, Surrey, Coquitlam, Richmond and Mission slated to shut

Victims restrained, sex toys and cash stolen from B.C. adult store

Armed suspects sought in adult store robbery

Most Read