Earlier this month, the local food bank put out a call for donations, citing their fears of facing a potential food supply shortage as the winter months approach. On Thursday, Sept. 19, Safeway stepped in to help ease those worries.
Bob Hicks, executive director of the Food Bank Society, was at Safeway on Thursday to accept two large donations from the local grocery store, which will close its doors in the first week of October before eventually reopening in the community as a Freshco.
Safeway’s store manager Daniel Broddy was pleased to present Hicks with a full skid of Oasis juice boxes as well as two shopping carts full of $5 food hampers on Thursday.
Broddy explained that typically, the $5 food hampers he chose to donate are actually bought by Safeway’s customers and eventually donated, but said that Safeway has not sold many of those hampers at the 100 Mile House location.
“Usually what I like to do is bring them in and have a display on top of a freezer or something like that and sell them, but for some reason it hasn’t really done well here,” Broddy explained. “Now it’s getting time to close [the store] and I thought well, I could mark them down but why not donate them to the food bank?”
The hampers are prepackaged by Safeway to contain different canned goods, such as beans and other non-perishables.
Broddy mentioned that he made the decision to donate the unsold hamper bags to the Food Bank Society after reading a recent article from the Free Press wherein Hicks described the society’s growing need for support.
In early September, Hicks told the Free Press that there was a shortage of non-perishable goods at the food bank, estimating that the society only had enough food to last the month.
Hicks was overjoyed to hear that Broddy had read about the society’s need and responded in such a timely, heartfelt manner.
“I thank Daniel very much,” he said. “He’s been a great supporter of the food bank, a very good supporter.”
Back in June, Broddy and his staff at Safeway also presented the food bank with a donation of $3,000 collected during the company’s holiday fundraising campaign.
Broddy confirmed that he does not yet have official word on when his Safeway location will reopen as a Freshco, but said that he expects the news to come within the next weeks, at which point he will also receive confirmation of whether or not his employment in the community will continue at the new store.
If it does, Broddy is determined to continue helping out the Food Bank whenever possible.
“It might look a little different, who knows how budgets are, but we might do more fundraising,” he said. “Bob and I will talk.”
The food bank is still seeking donations and volunteers leading up to the holidays. During Christmas, Hicks said the food bank will distribute between 300 to 400 hampers throughout the community in just one day.