Can volunteers to knock on doors

By Genevieve Helliwell


 


Volunteers will soon be hitting Western Bay streets, knocking on doors and asking the public to donate a can or two in support of the Bay of Plenty Times Christmas Appeal, in the aim of raising money for the Tauranga Community Foodbank.

Each year the Foodbank supports thousands of cash-strapped families, with demand increasing during the festive season.

The Bay of Plenty Times has recognised the need for the service, so for the next six weeks the newspaper will be seeking donations of food items and cash so the Foodbank can continue its charity work over the holiday period.

As well as a kick-start donation of $1000 and bringing cans to the workplace, newspaper staff and volunteers could visit your neighbourhood when they take part in three can drives.

These are set to take place between 5.30pm and 7.30pm on November 27 and December 4 and 11.

Each can or item of food donated is being counted as $1.50.

A successful campaign last year saw more than $53,000 raised for the Foodbank. This year, with the help of Bay businesses, schools and community groups, organisers are hoping to raise more.

To help boost funds, local service groups are backing the Bay of Plenty Times Christmas Appeal and hosting their own events to raise money for the Tauranga Community Foodbank.

The Tauranga City Sunrise Lions Club are set to host their own can drive on Saturday, December 8.

Its members will spend the day collecting from First to Twenty-Second Ave.

"Last year was the first time we did this and it came about from the Bay of Plenty Times appeal," said past president and current board member Ken Evans.

"We wanted to see how we could get involved and [a can drive] was something we decided to do and it was hugely successful so we've decided to do it again."

President Brian Hammond said they were hoping to raise $5000 from this year's can drive.

"The Foodbank is a local charity and they do a huge amount of work for the community and they reach a lot of people we can't get to so we fully support what they do."

Otumoetai Lions Club members are also supporting the cause.

The club is hosting a motorcycle rally to raise money for the Foodbank. Motorcyclists will gather at The Strand between 9-11.30am on Sunday, December 9 before they depart and travel through Tauranga and end up at Baypark.

Club president Kevin Jagusch welcomed any motorcyclist to take part, with the entry fee being a minimum of two cans.

Members of the public can check out the motorbikes at The Strand for a can or gold coin donation prior to 11.30am.

Foodbank chairman Mike Baker was grateful local community groups were getting behind the charity, which issued 8300 food parcels to desperate households last year.

The amount raised in both Lions events will be added to the Bay of Plenty Times Christmas Appeal.

Members of the public are welcome to take part in the Tauranga City Sunrise Lions can drive on Saturday December 8 and can phone Ken Evans on 578 0451 for more information.

Motorcyclists are invited to be involved in the Otumoetai Lions Tin Can Rally on December 9 and can visit www.lionstincanrally.co.nz for more information.

- Bay of Plenty Times

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