Royal Bay Secondary’s leadership class, comprised of Grade 9 through 12 students, is part of the student team organizing this year’s 10,000 Tonight event. The public is invited to drop off donations drive-thru style at either West Shore high school on Dec. 1, 3, 8 and 10 from 4 to 7 p.m. (Aaron Guillen/News Staff)

Royal Bay Secondary’s leadership class, comprised of Grade 9 through 12 students, is part of the student team organizing this year’s 10,000 Tonight event. The public is invited to drop off donations drive-thru style at either West Shore high school on Dec. 1, 3, 8 and 10 from 4 to 7 p.m. (Aaron Guillen/News Staff)

10,000 Tonight gets a pandemic twist with West Shore students continuing the tradition

Students still collecting donations but for four evenings this year

The choice to move forward with one of the West Shore’s largest food drives amid the pandemic was easier said than done, according to Royal Bay Secondary teacher Sara Checkley.

Royal Bay and Belmont high school students will be back in action this year collecting non-perishables for 10,000 Tonight but with a big adjustment – they won’t be going door-to-door.

But over the span of four days instead of just one night in December, they will have a drive-thru style event.

“In a year like this, the students didn’t want to lose this event as well,” Checkley said. “They definitely wanted this to happen. This is the kind of event where the kids can actually see the immediate impact of their hard work.”

READ MORE: Royal Bay grads game of tag ends with food, care for the community

In years past, hundreds of community members, volunteers and students from the West Shore would work together. 10,000 Tonight launched in 2009 at Belmont Secondary with the goal of collecting 10,000 non-perishable food items, such as pasta sauce, cookies and canned goods, in a single night.

It’s grown over the years and in 2019, the three high schools in the Sooke School District collected 43,880 items for the Goldstream and Sooke food banks.

The public can drop off donations drive-thru style at both Royal Bay and Belmont – with COVID-friendly protocols in effect – on Dec. 1, 3, 8 and 10 from 4 to 7 p.m. Organizers ask that residents stay in their vehicles as students will take the donations in the parking lot.

Organizers add that drivers should not come to the drive-thru if they are sick or have COVID symptoms and need to be wearing a mask. The event is subject to change or cancellations with any new provincial health orders.

Food donations will be quarantined for at least 48 hours.

Donations can also be made online at bit.ly/10000Tonight.

ALSO READ: Belmont, Royal Bay, Edward Milne high schools smash 10,000 Tonight goals


 

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