Help fill buses with food on June 1

Tim Haskell and Brenda LeClair, of CK Helping Hands and Outreach for Hunger, were just two of the many volunteers on hand Aug.19 last summer’s Fill the Bus campaign. The effort is back underway on Saturday.

CK Helping Hands asks for a little help from the community on June 1…filling school buses with food.

The organization will set up buses outside a variety of grocery stores across Chatham-Kent from 8 a.m. until 2 p.m. that day, collecting non-perishable food items to donate to area food banks.

CK Helping Hands’ Tim Haskell said the group has been doing it since the onslaught of the pandemic in 2020, and found the effort had a two-pronged effect.

“It’s also bringing attention to the food banks,” he said, “as well as trying to fill them up.”

Initially rolled out in Chatham, Fill the Bus has spread to most communities in the municipality where there is a grocery store.

“After that first year, it went to a lot of different communities,” Haskell said. “We’re trying to get into some of the smaller communities, but if there isn’t a grocery store, we can’t really do it.”

On top of that, there are several Dollar Tree stores that collect food ahead of time.

“It will be nice to add that to the collection too,” he said.

In Chatham, Fill the Bus will be set up outside of Sobeys, Real Canadian Super Store, Giant Tiger, Food Basics, Dollar Tree and No Frills.

In Wallaceburg, there will be buses in front of No Frills and the Dollar Tree.

Tilbury will see a bus at No Frills, while Sobeys in Blenheim plays host, as does Foodland in Ridgetown. Meanwhile, in Dresden, the drop-off location will be North Dresden Baptist Church.

Donations will remain in the communities in which they are collected.
Supporting organizations include Giving Hearts, Chatham Goodfellows, Salvation Army, FreeHelpCk Ridgetown, LaSertoma, R.O.C.K. Missions, Chatham-Kent Caring Citizens, Chatham Outreach for Hunger, Tilbury Help, Salvation Army Blenheim and North Dresden Church.



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