Christmas comes early for foodbank

Dairy Flat School students and their families filled boxes with cereal and other items for the foodbank.

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The foodbank at Hibiscus Coast Community House has been restocked, once again, thanks to the generosity of local residents, businesses and organisations.

Community House manager Christine Alesbury says the influx of donated goods came in response to a story that Hibiscus Matters ran last issue, November 20.

The foodbank was low or out of stock on a large number of basic items, with Christmas just around the corner. The problem is not a new one – the paper ran similar stories at this time of year in 2015 and 2016, and each time the community has answered the call.

Stock ran low this time because fewer donations were coming in, culminating in a Christmas shortage.

It is that long-term support that is needed, and Christine says there is some good news on that front. She says Countdown Orewa got in touch for the first time and wants to meet representatives from the Community House to see how the supermarket can help.

Meanwhile the collection bin at Orewa New World has been filled to overflowing, regular helpers such as local churches increased their donations, and the Waitemata District Health Board donated a carload of non-perishable food. The Happy Kiwi cafe in Silverdale restocked the freezer with pies and Bayleys Real Estate in Orewa collected enough food to fill a table.

Schools have been collecting food too. Dairy Flat School’s PTA took a box in last week and Orewa College staff opted to donate food instead of doing Secret Santa gifts.

Gulf Harbour School brought in a large quantity of cereal.

“The Community House provides free breakfast for the kids at Gulf Harbour School daily, so they were returning the favour,” Christine says.

However, Community House coordinator Judith Pearce says most of the items have come from individuals who have brought in box loads of food and made cash donations in recent weeks.

“It’s been everything we asked for, and more,” Judith says. “Thank you so much to everyone for their kindness and support.”

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