This afternoon’s Infant Food Drive supporting Reach Out Center for Kids(ROCK) filled up a skid with donations at St. Matthews Anglican Church.
Throughout the pandemic St. Matthews Church has hosted a weekly drive-through drop-off food collection to fill the void of in-person fundraising events. Today’s collection supports the Infant Food Bank at ROCK’s Warwick/Surrey location part of their Our Community Cares(OOC) program. OOC helps adults and children within the community who are at risk.
OCC provides both structured and unstructured programs for children and youths to encourage learning, physical activity and fun. The goal is to provide opportunities for character building, social and life skill development and to provide recreational opportunities to improve overall quality of lives.
Included are Adult Education programs, Parent Talk, and Goodwill Employment Services. They also manage a Food Support Cupboard, Fresh Food Box, Clothing Room, Household Items, Infant Pantry, Computer Access, Lending Library, and accepts furniture items when needed.
Connie Price of the Partnering Aldershot Food Collection Committee helped orchestrate today’s event which ran from 11 am to 3 pm. Price said she had noticed that people don’t necessarily think of infant food when donating to food banks so she wanted an event to fill those specific needs.
“We just have to let the community know what the needs are. What I’ve found is if you come to the community with a specific problem or a specific need, they’ll step up,” said Price.
Ward 1 City and Regional Councillor – Kelvin Galbraith helped load up two vehicles on a bright windy afternoon. “It’s really great to get out and see people in person again and community events like this are very important.
They’ve been continuing through the pandemic but it’s great to see the people that are doing it and thank them because they’re volunteers in our community and they’re doing great,” said Gailbraith.
St. Matthews Church Church is currently collecting clothes for human trafficking survivors and is continuing their weekly drive-through food drives. At the height of the pandemic, they hosted two food drives each week; as restrictions have loosened were able to reduced it to one. The weekly food drive supports Partnership West Food Bank and St. Matthews Outreach Chair, Grace Ann Wilbur, noted it will currently run until Christmas but the church is happy to continue with the event as long as the food bank needs them to. St. Matthews Church uses social media and flyers to spread the word about events like today. Grace Ann Wilbur said Connie Price sends flyers to everyone she knows which is “half of Burlington.” Given the continued support of events at St. Matthews Church, it’s hard to say if she was joking about Price knowing half of Burlington or not. St. Matthews church is located in Aldershot, 126 Plains Rd. East. Their weekly food drives take place on Wednesdays from 10 am to 1 pm. The weekly food drives are not infant-specific, they accept all non-perishable food items.
ROCK accepts drop-off donations at their Warwick/Surrey location, located at 702 Surrey Ln. ROCK encourages those in need to contact them via phone or email, contact information is available on their website.
Ryan O'Dowd, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Burlington Gazette