The White Rock/South Surrey Food Bank is cautioning Peninsula residents about a door-to-door solicitor claiming to be the local food bank.
The solicitor is not associated with the WRSS Food Bank, manager Ruth Chitty said, despite reports that the group claims otherwise.
“Recently, people have been reporting that the food bank that is coming door-to-door says they are the local food bank and this is not so, unless there’s a food bank in our area that we don’t know about,” she said. “The food bank has a policy – we do not solicit door-to-door.”
The WRSS Food Bank has recently received “several” calls from people who have been solicited for money by the group, Chitty said. It’s been an issue in the past, when residents reported solicitations late at night and in seniors homes.
“It’s frustrating and it’s doubly frustrating because it’s been going on for so many years. The other frustrating aspect of it is we hear from callers that the solicitors are quite aggressive.”
Food banks registered with Food Banks Canada agree to respect each other’s service areas, Chitty noted.
“Food banks… entirely rely on our local community for sustainability and support, so it’s an issue for food banks when another group enters their community and solicits door to door.”
If residents encounter such a solicitor, Chitty encourages them to ask what the group’s address is. If it isn’t that of the WRSS Food Bank – 5-15515 24 Ave. – then its not the local food bank, she said.
And people who are interested in supporting the community food bank can still do so.
“They may want to consider donating directly to the food bank if they want to make a donation, that way they’re playing it safe.”
Donations can be made by phone (604-531-8168), mail (5-15515 24 Ave., Surrey, B.C., V4A 2J4), in person or online (sourcesbc.ca).
More information is also available by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Other ways to help
The White Rock/South Surrey Food Bank is requesting gardeners donate any excess produce from their vegetable gardens or fruit trees.
“We value fresh, whole food as the ultimate food donation,” manager Ruth Chitty said. “It’s healthy food, it’s locally grown, more nutritious and it doesn’t have a huge impact on the environment, with little travel from their garden to our doorway.”
For those who are unable to collect or transport the food themselves, volunteer gleaners are available to gather garden produce and pick fruit from trees, Chitty noted.
“Any fresh produce is very valuable. We are very aware of the link between food and health, and we are also very aware of the limited access people living on a low income have to (healthy food).”
The food bank is also looking for additional volunteer gleaners.
For more information, call 604-531-8168 or email email@example.com