Cowichan Valley Basket Society shelves have been emptying but a big food drive is expected to help fill them, manager Colleen Fuller said.
A campaign, organized province-wide by the Church of Latter-Day Saints attracts considerable support here, she said.
â€œIt will be our fourth year of working with the Duncan Latter-Day Saints. And, although they organize it, lots of people like to take part. There are church groups as well as individuals. Iâ€™ve got three volunteer teams from here. Itâ€™s just lots of fun and it loads us up to well past Christmas. Between that and the other big food drive thatâ€™s coming and all the schools itâ€™s pretty amazing,â€ she said.
The campaign starts Monday, Sept. 15.
Organizers gather teams of four people and each team is given a route map.
â€œWeâ€™re hoping to hit 5,000 houses that way. The teams go out and deliver bags with the information on to the peopleâ€™s doors â€” usually about 150 houses apiece. They can do it anytime on Sept. 15, 16 and 17. Those are our drop-off days.â€
The big collection takes place on the Saturday.
â€œThatâ€™s Sept. 20; thatâ€™s when we go around with the same teams on their same routes and we pick up full bags. Itâ€™s a really easy, easy food drive. Itâ€™s awesome,â€ Fuller said.
Areas being covered include Duncan, Cowichan Bay and Maple Bay.
She encourages anyone interested to contact Michelle at 250-748-5334 or Fred at 250-715-1393 to sign up. It takes about three hours to drop off bags and about an hour to pick up.
â€œWe need about 35 teams and now weâ€™re at about halfway with 15. And for those who just want to fill up the bags, thereâ€™s a way for them to do that, too,â€ Fuller said.
Last year â€” the third time it was held in the Cowichan Valley â€” the drive was a great success.
â€œI think we got more than 11,000 pounds of food,â€ Fuller said.
Meanwhile, as summerâ€™s bounty is almost pouring out of local gardens, the Basket Society is happily taking in any extra fruit and veggies.
â€œIndividual people have been coming in every day. Thatâ€™s awesome, of course, but our biggest supporter is Cowichan Green Community. If people canâ€™t pick their own fruit, they can phone there and they will send out a group of pickers and they bring it in here. It has been just such a great partnership.â€ Fuller said.
â€œAlso, itâ€™s the same for gardens. If youâ€™ve got extra garden stuff, just bring it on in. We have been very blessed. A lot of our folks with their limited incomes, this is like Christmas candy for them. Theyâ€™re just so excited. I have a lineup every morning to see if I have fruit and vegetables. I really encourage it.â€