No child or family will go without toys or food this Christmas if it’s up to the Smithers Community Service Association (SCSA).
Once again, the SCSA is providing presents under the tree to residences all over the Bulkley Valley.
For 30 years, the SCSA has offered Christmas hampers to families in Smithers, Telkwa and Moricetown, and this year is no different.
With over 300 families provided for this year, the hampers are filled with toys and fresh and non-perishable foods.
John Howard, Christmas hamper coordinator, explains this experience has helped open his eyes.
“I had someone talk to me yesterday telling me they have been delivering for about 20 years. You really get your eyes opened, to see seven people living in one hotel room with one bed. It’s an eye opener. If this (Christmas hamper) didn’t happen, it would be missed,” he said.
The last day to apply for a hamper is Dec. 9. Howard explains people can apply online at the Smithers Community Service Association website. Those in Moricetown can also apply at the band office and those in Smithers and Telkwa can apply at the Community Service Association building on Railway Avenue.
The hampers will be delivered to Moricetown on Dec. 15, and in Smithers and Telkwa on Dec. 17. But the SCSA is still looking for people to donate.
“We also have sponsors who sponsor a family. They go out and do all the shopping for the family. They bring it here (to the depot) and we distribute it, so that’s also an option for people,” he said.
Howard encourages anyone who is having a hard time this year to apply for a hamper. He appreciates all the donations SCSA has already received.
“We really appreciate the generosity of the community for this program over the years and again this year has been pretty cool,” said Howard.
Anyone is eligible to apply.
“Everyone applies who wants to get a hamper and we have all that information but it doesn’t go out anywhere. It’s just for our knowledge,” said Howard.
For info on how to donate, visit scsa.ca/programs/other-services/christmas-hampers/.