CANMORE – The season of giving is here and Canmore’s Royal LePage office isn’t missing out.
Hosting its 28th holiday food drive, Royal LePage is still looking for volunteers to help with this years drive, which aims to give the less fortunate in the valley a little extra at this time of year.
“There’s a lot of people that struggle at this time of the year, especially with some of the challenges in the Alberta economy these days, there is a fairly high demand for that type of support,” said Brad Hawker, one of the drive’s original coordinators.
“It’s a real kind of a feel good evening, and if you haven’t participated, we’d love to have you come out.”
Hawker said the initiative was started by seven individuals, including him, and was initially focused on a couple of streets in the Cougar Creek area.
“I’m the last remaining person from our original group of seven that started this 28 years ago,” he said.
“There were only seven of us who went out into the Cougar Creek area and did a couple of streets out there. It grew a little more the next year … and now we cover the whole town.”
The Royal LePage food drive collects non-perishable items by using walking and driving volunteers to collect items from residential areas of the community.
“We’ll be collecting non-perishable food items door-to-door that night by volunteers, we do all sorts of cash donations or checks, and tax receipts available for 20 or more,” said Hawker.
“It’s sorted that evening and then it goes to the food bank ... then if people aren’t going to be home that evening, people know to leave their porch light on and a bag of groceries outside for us to collect, or another option would be for them to drop it off at the Royal Lepage office if they forget.”
Hawker said in the last 27 years, the drive has donated 160,000 pounds of food and over $677,000 dollars.
“People in this community are very generous,” he said.
“It’s one of those feel good things that you do, it’s really great seeing the community come together and work for a common goal that’s very supportive of those that are in need.”
The event itself is held on Dec. 5 and is headquartered at Canmore Chrysler from 5:30-9:30 p.m. During that time, walkers and drivers collect food around town and others are welcome to come drop it off at the dealership. A reception will be held afterwards at the Royal LePage office on 10th Street, where cookies, hot chocolate, pizza, and alcoholic beverages will be served.
Hawker said volunteers are still needed for all aspects of the event. If interested in volunteering, contact Taylor Mueller at 403-988-4062 or Sherry Protz at 403-678-8307.