EMCS holds its 10,000 Tonight food collection for the Sooke Food Bank on Dec. 12. (Metro Creative Graphics)

Sooke students rally to stock food bank shelves

“For me, it makes the Christmas spirit come alive.”

Allana Garat doesn’t have to rely on the local food bank to fill an empty stomach, but it doesn’t stop her from working hard to make sure the shelves are stocked for those who do.

In Grade 12 at Edward Milne community school, Garat is one of hundreds of students and staff that raise thousands of pounds of food every year for the Sooke Food Bank, under the school’s 10,000 Tonight food drive program.

“The best part for me is when we take all the items to the food bank at the end of the night and see that the shelves are full. For me, it makes the Christmas spirit come alive,” said Garat.

The goal of 10,000 Tonight is to collect 10,000 non-perishable food items in a single evening of intensive work. The drive takes place Dec. 12.

READ MORE: Last year’s food drive

“The program was actually started about 10 years ago by Belmont High (in Langford) and we joined in four years ago to collect food items specifically for the Sooke Food Bank,” explained Garat, one of the program’s organizers.

“The first year we fell short of our goal, but it’s been growing ever since and last year it was a huge success and we managed to collect over 14,000 food items. We’re going to try to do even better this year.”

While the actual 10,000 Tonight event is still a few weeks away people are invited to get a head start on the Christmas giving season by dropping off their donations early by bringing the food items to bins located around the community.

“We have bins at all the elementary schools, at SEAPARC Leisure Complex, the Stick in the Mud, and EMCS. People can drop off their donations and we’ll include those items in the count for the 10,000 tonight event.”

Unfortunately, one aspect of the 10,000 Tonight event that used to inspire students to work even harder was lost this year.

“In the past Belmont High, Royal Oak High School and EMCS had a friendly competition to see which school could collect the most. But Royal Oak is doing their event a week earlier and Belmont isn’t doing it at all. I think they couldn’t find anyone who would organize it, so that’s too bad,” said Garat.

But that change has done nothing to dampen the holiday spirit in Sooke.

“It doesn’t matter to us, really. We’ll have about 100 volunteers out there collecting food, counting items and driving volunteers. This year Sooke Minor Hockey is helping out as is the Sooke Soccer Club, so we’ll have a lot of help,” said Garat.

She added that anyone who has not had an opportunity to make a donation at one of the collection bins and who may not be around on the night of Dec. 12, can simply leave a bag of non-perishable food in a bag on their doorstep and volunteers will pick it up and add it to the other donations.



mailto:tim.collins@sookenewsmirror.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

UVic students return from Hong Kong amidst growing tension

All eight University of Victoria exchange students have returned to Canada

ICBC, province urge residents to plan ahead for winter weather

Greater Victoria should gear up and have a plan in place

Sooke mom launches GoFundMe campaign to get medical treatment for son

Single mother has two children facing medical challenges

65-million-year-old triceratops makes its debut in Victoria

Dino Lab Inc. is excavating the fossilized remains of a 65-million-year-old dinosaur

VIDEO: ‘Climate emergency’ is Oxford’s 2019 Word of the Year

Other words on the shortlist included ‘extinction,’ ‘climate denial’ and ‘eco-anxiety’

12 Sooke events to get you into the holiday spirit

From a Santa parade to classicial music, Sooke has it all

Canucks erupt with 5 power-play goals in win over Nashville

Vancouver ends three-game slide with 6-3 triumph over Predators

Nanaimo man caught with more than 200,000 child porn images to be sentenced

Crown says Aaron Macrae recorded video of children on buses and at his workplace

Vancouver Island hunters may have harvested deer in area known for chronic wasting disease

Conservation officers make urgent request to public for any information

B.C. widow suing health authority after ‘untreatable’ superbug killed her husband

New Public Agency Health report puts Canadian death toll at 5,400 in 2018

Changes to B.C. building code address secondary suites, energy efficiency

Housing Minister Selina Robinson says the changes will help create more affordable housing

Security guard at Kamloops music festival gets three years for sexually assaulting concertgoer

Shawn Christopher Gray walked the woman home after she became seperated from her friends, court heard

Most Read