The milder weather has people thinking spring, not hunger, but those who require food banks face the need, no matter the time of year.
Loblaws stores, including Langleyâ€™s Real Canadian Superstore, Your Independent Grocer, and no frills, are holding the Extra Helping Spring Food Drive until April 24.
â€œWe always try to find ways to support the local Langley community and the Extra Helping Spring Food Drive is just one way we can do that,â€ said Joe Viana, manager of Langleyâ€™s Real Canadian Superstore.
People can donate non-perishables at the stores (the bins are out year-round) or they can add a donation to their bill at the checkout.
â€œHunger is a year-round reality for far too many families,â€ said Laura Lansik, executive director of Food Banks BC. â€œThe Spring Extra Helping Food Drive helps us replenish our stock and fight hunger in our communities. Adding just one item to the food donation bin or a few extra dollars to your grocery bill makes a big difference to local families in need.â€
According to Food Banks BC, about 94,000 residents, 30 per cent of them children, rely on a food bank in an average month around the province.
â€œWhen customers are thinking about what to donate, weâ€™d like them to consider selecting the same types of healthy foods they would pick up for their own family,â€ Viana said.
All of the food donations and 85 per cent of cash donations will go directly to food banks across B.C., while the remaining 15 per cent of donated cash will support provincial food bank programs.
Loblaw Companies Ltd. and its stores hope to raise $1.8 million and 1.8 million pounds of food in 2014. The stores have supported local food banks for years, but in 2009 rebranded under Extra Helping and has twice-yearly food drives.