College of the North Atlantic (CNA) campuses across the province will take part in the newly-minted CBC Feed NL Day, which launched today across the province.
Members of the public, as well as faculty, students and staff at all 17 CNA campuses throughout the province, are encouraged to participate by dropping off non-perishable food items at their local campus, making a monetary contribution through the nearest RBC branch, or making a monetary donation online through the CNA or CBC websites.
Feed NL Day takes the place of the former CBC Turkeys for Christmas Drive which successfully ran for the past 11 years. The collection and storage of 7,000 turkeys, and subsequent delivery to 54 food banks throughout the province, presented significant logistical challenges. This year CBC has moved to a format which focuses on raising funds and collecting non-perishable food items. All monetary proceeds from Feed NL Day will continue to be donated to the Community Food Sharing Association for food banks across Newfoundland and Labrador.
According to Eg Walters, general manager of the Community Food Sharing Association, a downturn in the economy in Newfoundland and Labrador means families need support more than ever. The organization helps tens of thousands of people each year, with food bank usage increasing by more than five per cent within the last year alone.
“It is extremely important that food banks across the province get support this time of year. We have a lot of less fortunate people throughout the whole of Newfoundland and Labrador, and in fact, food bank usage is up to over 26,000 people,” Walters said.
“It’s important to keep the less fortunate in mind, not only during Christmas time, but throughout the rest of the year. Christmas is a special time of year and a special time of giving, and I would like to see less fortunate people be able to sit down to a nice Christmas dinner just the same as you or I.”
By focusing on collecting funds and non-perishables, the Feed NL Day campaign is accessible to a greater number of people. Not everyone can afford to buy and/or donate a turkey, but as little as $5 can be donated online to help support those in need in the province. And with three ways to make donations, Walters says it’s now easier than ever to help those in need.
“Monetary donations made in each community will stay in the local area,” Walters said. “For example, the money that is donated in Stephenville will stay in Stephenville with Stephenville Emergency Food Services because we can identify where it was donated. All of the non-perishable food donated at the CNA campuses will also go to their local food banks.”
The new format not only makes it easier for people to donate, but it allows the Association to better service food banks in the province while helping the less fortunate in a more efficient manner.
CNA campuses and RBC will be accepting donations for the duration of the three-week campaign, while non-perishable food donations can be made in-person at CBC St. John’s, located at 95 University Avenue, or at Dominion locations in the province on the last day of the campaign, Friday, Dec. 9.
For more information about CBC Feed NL Day, visit the CBC website at www.cbc.ca/feednlday
or the CNA website at www.cna.nl.ca/feednl
. You can also follow CBC Newfoundland and Labrador’s Twitter account, or check for updates via #CBCfeednlday and #CBChelps.
Public Relations Specialist
College of the North Atlantic