A Vernon woman is turning her passion for baking into a coronavirus relief effort.
Crystal Hedlund started a GoFundMe page on March 26 with the goal of raising $1,000 for baking supplies, which she’ll then use to bake goods to give to those struggling amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
With food banks seeing a surge in demand, Hedlund said she would like to put her 20 years of baking experience to work and donate the baked goods to the Salvation Army food bank and the Upper Room Mission.
“In our community, and I’m sure it’s the same in other communities as well, our food banks are running dry, and so are some of our other resources that are utilized by our homeless and low-income population,” she said.
“I would like to somehow give back to not only my community but to as many communities as we can reach.”
The Fig Bistro, a downtown Vernon restaurant, has offered to let Hedlund use its commercial kitchen for her baking.
Once some funds have been generated, Hedlund says she’ll order ingredients locally every two weeks or once a month to limit exposure.
“I am willing to donate 100 per cent of my available time to bake all sorts of breads, snacks, treats and so much more, if I can collect financial donations for the ingredients from anyone who is in the position to help,” she said.
Hedlund invited people to message her personally with any suggestions or if they would like to help the initiative in some way.
Hedlund says she was planning to open a bakery before the pandemic – a venture she’ll now have to put on hold. For now, she’s happy to have found a way to support others while doing something she loves.
“This all started with just me, a couple of very supportive business associates, my love for baking, and not to mention my love to help feed people and families,” she said.
“We are in this together! Stay safe and stay healthy!”