White Rock Youth Ambassadors prepare to deliver to February’s Bunches of Lunches recipients. (bunchesoflunches.ca photo)

White Rock Youth Ambassadors prepare to deliver to February’s Bunches of Lunches recipients. (bunchesoflunches.ca photo)

White Rock Youth Ambassadors partner to deliver ‘Bunches of Lunches’ for seniors

Program raises funds for weekend meal program for students

A Semiahmoo Peninsula-based initiative described as “a simple act of kindness with no strings” is filling the hearts and tummies of young and old alike.

A partnership of White Rock Youth Ambassadors, White Rock Elks and Peninsula Retirement Residence, Bunches of Lunches launched last fall.

According to information at bunchesoflunches.ca, it offers no-charge meals once every two months to seniors aged 65 and older who live in the South Surrey/White Rock area. The meals are chef-prepared at Peninsula Retirement Residence and delivered by the WRYA “2019/2021 Royalty Team.”

(Due to COVID-19 preventing in-person training during the pandemic, all 2020/21 candidates were crowned as ambassadors and are to compete for royalty titles in 2021; and, the reign of the 2019-20 royalty team, led by Miss White Rock Sasha Reynolds, was extended by a year.)

According to the website information, the initiative came together after Corry-Ann Neilands of the retirement residence expressed interest in joining the Elks. Club president Leah McGovern had been wondering how the club could let seniors know that they are important during the pandemic, and Neilands’ inquiry opened the door.

The Elks connection as long-time sponsors of the youth ambassadors filled the missing link.

The first lunches were delivered on Nov. 18. The second delivery followed in February – unfazed by snowfall – and the third is set for this weekend (April 10).

While the lunches are delivered at no cost to those who sign up, any donations benefit the Backpack Buddies program, which discreetly provides a weekend’s worth of meals and snacks every Friday to students in need.

READ MORE: Surrey council earmarks $1.8M in grants for community groups

The youth ambassadors are hoping to raise $3,000 for Backpack Buddies this year – enough to serve up 1,800 meals.

That final component makes Bunches of Lunches – with youth helping seniors helping youth – “the perfect circle of kindness,” the website notes.

The deadline to sign up for this month’s lunch delivery is today (April 8), however, those who miss out need not dismay – the deliveries are to recur every once every two months throughout 2021.

For more information, or to sign up for the next round, visit bunchesoflunches.ca

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