Morinville – A much heavier Morinville Community Bus groaned over the weigh scales Thursday and Friday night after two consecutive days of collecting food throughout the community. Organizers of this year’s annual Fill-A-Bus were hoping to outdo the 7,469 pounds of food and $810 in cash donations collected last year for the Morinville Food Bank Society. Those expectations and goals were not disappointed as Morinvillians of all ages rose to the occasion to support the cause. This year’s initiative collected 7,032 pounds of food and $2,610 in cash donations. While the weight of food was a little less than last year, the volume may have actually been more as donations included far more than the traditional heavy tins of non-perishables. Plenty of cereals, personal grooming products and other lighter but much-needed products filled the bus this year as well.
Ken Skjersven of the Morinville Food Bank Society said he was pleased with this year’s totals. “ It’s going to be a big help for the food bank, that’s for sure,” he said. “It’s going to take us over the major part of the winter.”
Skjersen was not alone in being delighted with the response. Town of Morinville employee Melodie Steele, who organized the event, was also thrilled with the response. “Every year Morinville surprises me,” She said. “I’m over the moon. Excellent turnout. It was a lot of very generous people making sure the food bank has what it needs to take care of our need families over the holidays.”
The Fill-A-Bus hit the road Thursday morning, collecting food items from Morinville schools and businesses. The bus made the rounds to Morinville Public Elementary School, Notre Dame, Georges H. Primeau, and Morinville Community High School, each location trotting out loads of food donations for the cause carried by enthusiastic students. In between school visits the bus hit a number of local businesses, including Servus Credit Union, H&R Block, and Frontier Honda. Thursday’s collection totaled 3,858 pounds and $450 in cheques.
On Friday the bus, town staff, Food Bank Society members, community volunteers, and Santa Claus set up at the No Frills in the morning and at Sobeys in the afternoon, giving residents an opportunity to pick up a little something along with their own grocery needs.
The food and funds will go a long way to helping the Morinville Food Bank Society in meeting their needs this Christmas season and beyond. With additional shelf space in their new location next to the arena, the Morinville Food Bank Society has been able to carry a larger inventory to help more people over the past year.
With the holiday season approaching, the food bank can still use more. They are open Tuesdays and Thursdays. For more information contact the food bank at 780-939-2636.