It has been another “flying week” for Tauranga Community Foodbank donations, according to manager Nicki Goodwin.
As of 8am yesterday, the foodbank tally was $80,693 that included $59,556 in cash donations and 8455 food items, valued at $2.50 each.
This excluded the food items from the Mt Maunganui Emergency Services Food Drive, which would be counted next Friday.
The most notable donation was $20,000 from the Hillsdene Charitable Trust.
At the same time last year, the total sat at $84,542 from $67,725 in cash donations and 6727 food items valued at $2.50.
This year, the foodbank helped 22,298 people from 8213 households, which included 11,797 children spending an average of a little more than $20,000 per month on staple foods compared to about $14,800 the year before.
The average household experienced a 7.4 per cent rise in living costs in the year to September, according to Statistics New Zealand.
Goodwin said the cash and food items would help meet the ongoing demand into the New Year.
The Emergency Services Food Drive earlier this week collected more than 3800 items in The Lakes area alone.
Goodwin said, “one young boy had saved up all his coins to give to them on our behalf”.
If the Emergency Services didn’t manage to come by your street “you can drop off your donation to any library during opening hours, or pop down and see us at the foodbank”, she said.
Greenwood Park Village also did their annual mobility scooter dash around the village to collect donations.
They are challenging other villages to do the same.
The Hits Christmas in the Park movie night, screening The Grinch at Coronation Park in Mount Maunganui, is set to run tonight from 6pm to 10pm with a goal of 1000 donated food items.
The night will include a range of activities, food stalls, and entertainment as well as the movie screening on a 40sq m LED screen.
Hits event co-ordinator and manager of the movie night Hamish Gleeson said his hope for the event was to “bring people out and make sure they have a really good time”.
He also hoped to “give back to the local community and those most in need by raising as many donations as we can”.
Goodwin was “so glad everyone can get to enjoy this event”.
“A reminder to bring along a can or packet of food for foodbank- a little from everyone goes a very long way.”
Goodwin said Christmas “goodies” were low this year and “if anyone could add a few Christmas goodies to their weekly shopping then this would certainly add up.”
“I can’t tell you how heartwarming it is to see the expression on people’s faces when we can give that little bit of an unexpected surprise at Christmas- especially for the children and those who are alone at this time of the year.”
- Nappies: Size four, five, six
- Drinking chocolate and coffee
- Muesli bars
- Canned fruit
- Tinned fish
Any items are welcome, even if they’re not on the list including cash donations.
Harriet Laughton is a multi-media journalist based in the Bay of Plenty.