Christmas is often the time when many non-profit organizations are able to rally community support and raise the money or products they need to continue helping their clients into the next year. However, this past holiday season, while many were doing their best to fill the coffers of local charities, the bellies of the most vulnerable amongst us — babies — were being left empty.
Upon learning this fact, and knowing that children under the age of six months are limited to either breast milk or formula, The Chilliwack Progress decided to host a community-wide baby formula drive because soup kitchens and general food banks can’t always help infants.
The proceeds of the drive were to be split between the Salvation Army’s Food Bank and the Meadow Rose Society (MRS), who both work to alleviate he effects of poverty for struggling families.
Starting mid-December and running until January 4, The Progress accepted boxes and containers of Stage 1 and 2 baby formula, as well as monetary donations.
In total, 51 cans of formula, $940 in cash, and $2,600 in cheques were collected: and from the cash, The Progress was able to buy an additional 72 cans of formula thanks to discounted rates provided by the Real Canadian Superstore, and the cheques were divided between the two organizations.
”The Progress was happy to help support the Baby Formula Drive because there are many families facing financial struggles throughout the year,” said Progress publisher, Jean Hincks. “These donations hopefully help alleviate some of the costs that go into providing healthy food and formula for the children in our community.”
But more than that, this donation will allow Meadow Rose and the Salvation Army a bit of leeway in terms of supporting young families.
This donation, which will last the Meadow Rose Society about a month and a half, will provide the opportunity to feed babies, but also to allow the Society to spend money elsewhere, says Kathereen Kessler, founder of MRS, who added this was the most successful fundraiser the organization has seen since 2014, when Chances Chilliwack hosted a fundraiser for them.
For more information on the Meadow Rose Society, please visit their website at MeadowRoseSociety.com; for more information on the Salvation Army Food Bank, please visit SalvationArmyChilliwack.ca/care-and-share/food-bank.