Jaye Murray, manager of Sources’ South Surrey Food Bank. (Tracy Holmes photo)

Jaye Murray, manager of Sources’ South Surrey Food Bank. (Tracy Holmes photo)

Sources Food Bank issues plea for donations amid COVID-19 crisis

Pick-up process adapted to maintain two-metre separation

As many Semiahmoo Peninsula residents find themselves out of work – and conserving their resources – due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Sources Food Bank has issued a plea for donations of both food and cash.

Jaye Murray, manager of Sources food bank in White Rock/South Surrey, said that while it’s unclear at this point how sharply demand for service will rise in the coming weeks, donations to grocery-store bins have already dropped noticeably.

On Monday, Sources issued a request on its Facebook page for donations of rice, oats, canned meat and tuna – as well as other shelf-stable proteins – along with fresh and canned fruits and vegetables, powdered milk, sandwich-sized Ziploc bags and size 5 and 6 diapers.

Speaking with Peace Arch News Thursday morning (March 26), Murray said the food bank experienced a bit of a lull in demand last week. However, she noted, there are a couple likely reasons for that.

Uncertain whether they would be able to remain open, Sources provided clients with double the usual amount of food the previous week, she said.

“We let them know they didn’t have to come in (this week) in case we had to shut down, which we didn’t.”

In addition, it is “cheque week,” when demand for food is usually down, Murray said.

That can all change swiftly, she acknowledged.

“With everyone being laid off, it will depend on how quickly they can get support from the government.”

In White Rock/South Surrey, she said the food bank – which provides support to more than 600 registered clients – served about a dozen people this week who aren’t able to register because they lack proof of address. In that case, there are special walk-in bags available.

“We don’t send them away without food.”

READ ALSO: B.C. bans ‘shameful black market’ of food, medical supplies

READ ALSO: Letter: Disturbing side-effect of panic-buying is wasted food

The way regular clients are being served has changed as well, with new safety measures in place to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

Traditionally, people are able to come into the food bank and choose from a selection of items.

In an effort to minimize contact and maintain a two-metre distance, Sources staff have pre-bagged items for the week and people line up to collect them.

“It looks like a drive-thru here,” Murray quipped of the new process.

“Everyone is really understanding (about the shift). I think they just appreciate that we’re still giving out food.”

With many volunteers having booked off, which, Murray said, is understandable, Sources staff have stepped up to handle the bagging process.

Drivers are continuing to make the rounds of area grocery stores to collect donations, so Murray is asking donors to give at the stores rather than bring items directly to the food bank.

Monetary donations in the form of online donations or mailed cheques are also welcome.

Help is also on the way from the province, which announced late last week that food banks across British Columbia will receive emergency funding worth $3 million.

The provincial government said in a release that Food Banks BC will distribute the money among food banks province-wide because of its expertise in the management of food distribution.

The money is intended to help buy and distribute food, pay employees and cover other costs essential to the delivery of their food programs.

“Food Banks BC will assess the needs and requirements of food banks to determine the amount and timing of the distribution,” reads a government release.

“Funds will be distributed quickly and equitably to food banks across all regions of the province.”

Starting this week, distribution hours at Sources in South Surrey-White Rock will change. They will be Tuesdays, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m and Wednesdays, 10 a.m. 2 p.m.

– files from Wolf Depner, Black Press Media



editorial@peacearchnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

CoronavirusFood Bank

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

White Rock’s Housing Advisory Committee has recommnded a definition of affordable housing to be used in encouraging an increased supply of rental units for low and very low income households. (Contributed photo)
White Rock to establish city-made definition of affordable housing

Housing advisory committee suggests parameters geared to low-income households

Six-month-old Peanut enjoys a neck-brushing from Kindred Community Farm Sanctuary founder Keryn Denroche. (Tracy Holmes photo)
PHOTOS: $1,000,000 quest underway for South Surrey farm-animal refuge

Served with eviction notice, Kindred Community Farm Sanctuary ramps up search for new home

Car found burned in back alley Sunday near 9700-block of Princess Drive in Surrey. (Photo: Shane MacKichan)
IHIT looking for dash-cam footage of burned Surrey car believed related to YVR shooting

The burned vehicle was found near the 9700-block of Princess Drive

Surrey Police Service’s crest was unveiled Tuesday. (SPS image)
Surrey Police Service hires new communications manager from Surrey RCMP

Lisa Eason was municipal manager of Surrey RCMP’s communications and media unit for almost eight years

Clover Lanes is seen on May 7, a few days after the building was sold and the 72-year-old business was closed for good. (Photo: Malin Jordan)
End of an era: Clover Lanes closes for good

Building had been up for sale for more than a year

A bullet hole is seen in the windshield of an RCMP vehicle approximately 4 km from Vancouver International Airport after a one person was killed during a shooting outside the international departures terminal at the airport, in Richmond, B.C., Sunday, May 9, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Homicide team IDs man in fatal YVR shooting as police grapple with spate of gang violence

Man, 20, charged in separate fatal shooting Burnaby over the weekend

Vancouver Canucks goaltender Thatcher Demko (35) makes a save on Winnipeg Jets’ Nate Thompson (11) during second period NHL action in Winnipeg, Monday, May 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Greenslade
Vancouver Canucks see NHL playoff hopes dashed despite 3-1 win over Winnipeg

Montreal Canadiens earn final North Division post-season spot

Elias Pettersson and the Vancouver Canucks drew a large crowd to the Abbotsford Centre in 2019. Canucks management hopes the crowds return for the planned AHL team this fall, and early returns are positive. (John Morrow/Abbotsford News)
Canucks: ‘Incredible’ early interest for Abbotsford AHL tickets

Team has had a strong response to both e-mail information and priority ticket lists

The B.C. legislature went from 85 seats to 87 before the 2017 election, causing a reorganization with curved rows and new desks squeezed in at the back. The next electoral boundary review could see another six seats added. (Black Press files)
B.C. election law could add six seats, remove rural protection

North, Kootenays could lose seats as cities gain more

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

The Independent Investigations Office of B.C. is investigating the shooting of an Indigenous woman in the Ucluelet First Nation community of Hitacu. (Black Press Media file photo)
B.C. First Nation wants ‘massive change’ after its 3rd police shooting in less than a year

Nuu-chah-nulth woman recovering from gunshot wounds in weekend incident near Ucluelet

Nurse Gurinder Rai, left, administers the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine to Maria Yule at a Fraser Health drive-thru vaccination site, in Coquitlam, B.C., on Wednesday, May 5, 2021. The site is open for vaccinations 11 hours per day to those who have pre-booked an appointment. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
COVID vaccine bookings to open for adults 40+, or 18+ in hotspots, across B.C.

Only people who have registered will get their alert to book

Dr. Victoria Lee, CEO of Fraser Health, hosts an update on efforts to contain B.C.’s COVID-19 transmission in Surrey and the Fraser Valley and protect hospitals in the Lower Mainland, May 6, 2021. (B.C. government video)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infection rate slowing, 20 more people die

Deaths include two people in their 40s, two in their 50s

Most Read