The teams at North Hastings Community Trust and North Hastings Community Cupboard have been working to ensure that those in need in our community are helped during the COVID-19 pandemic, but now they are both reaching out to the community for support.
“We are seeing incredible numbers coming in,” Communications with the foodbank Monica Piercy tells the MyBancroftNow.com newsroom.
Community Trust’s Program Coordinator Jane Kali adds that there aren’t many places for people to go now with many popular hang-outs in North Hastings closed to visitors or operating as drive-thru only establishments. With that in mind, on top of handing out food, Kali and her team have been doing their best to educate people on the situation and the impact the virus is having and may have, while also doing their best to spread positivity to those who need it.
On Tuesday last week, they handed out 174 pounds of food. This past Tuesday, Piercy says they gave out 745 pounds. She adds that they’ve already topped what they handed out in February, with 10 more days to go.
“This is a time to show a lot of kindness especially o those who are struggling,” Kali says. “We’re going to experience some hard times and we don’t know how long it’s going to go on for.”
Piercy says they’ve haven’t been able to bring in food as they normally would since many grocery stores are putting limits on what can be purchased, including No Frills in Bancroft which is where the foodbank goes to top up their supply. She says right now they’re looking for people to donate “anything canned” like soup and fresh foods to ensure they have something healthy to hand-out as well.
She says the most in-demand items are canned meats like fish, ham or chicken along with tomatoes, pasta sauce, veggies and fresh fruit.
On top of food donations, Kali says Community Trust is looking for people to help prepare bagged lunches that they give out at NHCT’s office at 23 Bridge Street West from 11 AM until noon, Tuesday to Friday. They’re also looking for people to help them coordinate larger efforts that they are working on. You can reach out to them through Facebook or call them at 613-332-3657. They’re open from 10 AM until 3 PM on Tuesday through Friday.
If you can donate, Piercy says to reach out to them by calling them at 343-476-0177 or message them through Facebook and you will get direction on what to do. “We have people on-site with safe food handling certification,” she adds. Piercy says they are also working to make sure their building at 2 Madawaska Street is kept clean.