With the rate of inflation continuing to move grocery bills up, more and more people are turning to services such as the Weyburn Salvation Army Food Bank to ensure they have food on the table. This is leading to an increase in demand at the food bank, which is putting a strain on the stocks they have.
“We’ve actually had to add Monday to our food bank, which we started two weeks ago,” explained Nicole Strickland with the Salvation Army. “We used to be Tuesday to Friday. Now we are open Mondays and we are still booked solid. We are seeing 10 plus people a day, so that’s 50 families we are feeding a week.”
In terms of food staples they are always in need of, Strickland noted they can always use school snacks, baking supplies, condiments, soups and pasta among other non-perishable items. The food bank also accepts other donations as well, such as monetary donations.
“A lot of time people aren’t sure what to get for us, but they might want to drop a check off and get a tax receipt for that, and then we try to spend that money and stretch it a little further,” added Ronza Reynard, the Community Ministries Co-ordinator for Weyburn and Estevan. “We do shop locally but also through wholesales and try to spread that dollar a little further.”
One thing that was quite popular last year was the summer lunch program. They provided 100 lunches for kids every day, but they are expecting to see a jump in how many children would be coming for that as well.
“We’re looking at maybe an increase of about 150 with the new families coming in and moving around,” Strickland said. “Plus, we’ve also thrown around a few ideas and maybe some barbecues and treat days – just some fun things to do with the kids.”
"Last year, different companies or individual people stepped up and every day was sponsor,” Reynard added. “So, we’re hoping people will give us a call here, talk to Nicole at the office and sign up and be a sponsor for the day.”
Those who are interested in making donations to the Weyburn Salvation Army Food Bank can drop them off at the location on 4th Street. Those who are making donations are also encouraged to come by and take a look at how the donations are used to help out the community.