How Hockey for Hunger Helps our community.
Christine is a community leader that works with our Hockey 4 Hunger food donations and can attest to the direct impact this important campaign has in our community. She is also a new East Gwillimbury Eagles “Hockey Mom” with her son playing his first year of hockey in our PeeWee Local League.
I am the first to admit to knowing next to nothing about hockey, I definitely know about hunger in our community. A few years ago I did some research under a grant with United Way, I uncovered many marginalized individuals with the inability to access food supports in East Gwillimbury. As a result of my research we opened the Holland Landing Food Pantry and work collaboratively with Mount Albert Food Pantry and countless community service agencies that support our clients from East Gwillimbury.
Many residents may not be aware that we have a sizeable homeless population here in East Gwillimbury. Homelessness takes on many forms, from living hard on the streets, living at risk of being homeless and living in conditions that are far beyond acceptable. These residents are precariously housed and could very well be lacing their skates up next to your child, hunger shows up in the most unexpected places.
My son is very versed in these issues, he spends his food pantry days along with other community volunteers filling bags, unloading donations and running items out to clients. He helps out at the van sorting and loading donations that usually end up to those in need that very night. The donations from Hockey 4 Hungers are filling the cupboards each and every month and getting into the hands of those who need it most. Some may think that these issues are too much for our kids to understand, it has been my experience that children exposed to these issues have a better understanding and are often more empathetic to the needs of others.
The Mount Albert and Holland Landing food pantries rely heavily on the donations from Hockey 4 Hunger, we know we wouldn’t be able to make it through the long summer months without the support we receive from this incredible program. You are probably wondering where it goes after weigh in, well it comes to our team and taken to the empty greenhouse at New Leaf Living and Learning in Queensville. First thing Monday morning our team and clients roll up their sleeves and begin the long process of sorting, and sorting and sorting! This usually takes us a solid week and a half, by the time we are done the greenhouse looks like our own personal COSTCO!
Our team from Holland Landing and Mount Albert Food Pantries take five to six thousand pounds to our storage unit, this is the food that sustains us until next November. We then invite our community partners in to fill their cupboards, Second Chances in Sharon, Living Presence in Queensville, Blue Door Shelters, local schools, LOFT Street Outreach, Huron Heights Big Community Supper….the list is quite extensive. Your donations support clients and service providers offering services to our residents, local donations staying locally.
On behalf of the agencies that receive your donations, thank you. You get us through the days and months when donations are scarce and give us the ability to abundantly fill their shelves. Your donations are making a difference all year long!