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Stock up the shelves

Last year’s annual food bank appeal had a massive turnout of volunteers. PHOTO/FILE

KAREN COLTMAN
[email protected]

Today’s Wairarapa annual foodbank drive is crucial for getting the region’s food bank supplies up.

Indigo Freya from the Featherston Foodbank said their stocks were very low.

“The cupboards are getting bare, but demand is constantly going up,” Freya said.

Masterton Foodbank organisers and volunteers were looking forward to restocking the cupboards from donations gathered on the New Zealand Fire Service and Rotary Club appeal tonight.

“Our stocks are very low right now and Wednesday night’s donations are crucial for us to get us through the next few months,” Freya said.

“The number of people needing help is on the rise and November is already busier than the past two months.

“Most people needing the food bank have children, but singles on low incomes are struggling too.”

Freya said people only requested parcels when they really needed to and were too ashamed to come unless they were desperate.

She said with increasing rents, low incomes, and high food prices, things were tight for many in the community.

Freya reminded people to only give what they were comfortable with and not more.

She urged people not to give lollies or Christmas treats as there were other collections for that type of food.

She and Masterton Foodbank manager Lyn Tankersley were keen to receive donations of non-perishable foods such as canned fish and meat, beans and spaghetti, tomatoes, and sauces.

But they also encouraged donations of muesli bars, tea, coffee, milo, sugar, toothpaste, washing powder, soap, and other hygiene products.

Tankersley’s team gave out 150 food parcels last week and were buying all the food at present.

“We are feeding thousands of people and tomorrow night is very important to us,” Tankersley said.

“Please go through and clean out your pantry of goods you aren’t using.

“If you are out, please leave your donation at the gate or drop it in to Masterton fire station or to us at the food bank behind Repco

“We are especially short this year due to covid-19, so we appreciate anything you have to spare. Thank you in advance for your generosity.”

A record amount of goods were donated last year and the volunteer collectors, including children, were exhausted at the end of it.

Masterton Rotary Club volunteers are congregating at the Chapel St station today at 5.30pm for a safety briefing. The trucks will be heading out at about 6pm.

The Carterton and Featherston fire trucks are setting off at 6pm.

All three Martinborough vehicles will hit the road and the sirens at 5.30pm.

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