The Smithers Food Bank is seeing previously unheard of levels of food as they emerge from the holiday giving season.
Rick Apperson, the Salvation Army’s Bulkley Valley Ministries Director, said that the generosity of the community has shone through over the holidays and in the six years he’s been on the job he hasn’t seen the food bank have as much food at once as it does now.
“We are blessed that people in the community have given so much over the last few months. Our shelves are bursting at the seams, it’s incredible the amount of generosity,” he said.
He said a family in town went without gifts for each other and actually bought food for the food bank — that’s grandparents right to grand children — and another little girl asked friends to bring food rather than gifts for her birthday.
“It almost brought me to tears just seeing people reaching out this way to provide that amount of food for the food bank,” he said.
The food on hand now should get through through two or three months without them having to purchase additional food themselves.
That buffer makes life a bit easier for Apperson and Family Services Worker Dawn Fehr, who will be heading up the food bank and soup kitchen side of the Salvation Army organization.
“We can relax in one aspect for a couple of months,” said Apperson.
Now the work is just to date check the food, said Fehr.
Apperson added that checking dates does take time but is necessary. They received a donation of Kraft Mac and Cheese over the holidays and a close look revealed that the food was 15 years of out date. That’s not a typo.
Apperson and Fehr are very grateful to the support people have given over the holidays, and for people’s continued support, including the food bags purchased at Safeway, and the shoppers at the next door Salvation Army Thrift Store.
If people get to the thrift store before the end of the month they can bid on an accordion, a unique item them recently got their hands on.
All money raised through the auction, and general sales, supports the soup kitchen and food bank.