More dollars still needed at Red Deer Food Bank

Donation dollars are starting to add up at the Red Deer Food Bank. Up until this week, the food bank had only taken in about $240,000 to address its $550,000 budget for next year.

Donation dollars are starting to add up at the Red Deer Food Bank.

Up until this week, the food bank had only taken in about $240,000 to address its $550,000 budget for next year.

On Wednesday, executive director Fred Scaife said the amount raised is now up to about $300,000, but more dollars are still needed.

“A lot of people have been remarking that they didn’t realize we were in this kind of shape and coming up in the New Year they’re going to try to do something,” Scaife said.

“This amazing city has never disappointed me and I don’t imagine they will now.”

The number of people using the food bank in recent months has ranged from 1,400 to 2,200 per month.

He said this month that number dropped to about 1,000 thanks to all the hard-working community agencies involved in organizing Christmas hamper programs.

The food bank takes in about 70 to 75 per cent of cash donations during the last few months of the year and the number of donors dropped this quarter.

“Is it the economy? Is it the weather? I can guess all I want. But the reality is there’s enough food in here to feed anybody coming to our door in the foreseeable future.”

He said many are under the impression that people go out of their way to do good things just because it’s Christmas. But people in Red Deer do nice things all year long.

He said people offer their services for free to repair the food bank’s trucks. Community response was also quick after the recent theft of propane tanks from the food bank.

“That speaks volumes about what this city is made up of. It’s genuinely made up of some good-hearted businesses, good-hearted citizens all over the city.”

Scaife said now that more people know that the food bank is short on cash, he has faith the public will respond.

szielinski@www.reddeeradvocate.com