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$5,000 donation serves up breakfast for Saanich Peninsula Lions Food Bank

Santas Anonymous Society donation goes a long way, firefighters deliver the goods
SERVING UP Breakfast Spencer Barkley of the North Saanich Fire Department works with colleagues Chuck Hanan and Kurt Barner to unload 300 boxes of cereal and other in-demand breakfast items purchased with a $5,000 donation by CFAX Santas Anonymous Society to the Saanich Peninsula Lions Food Bank. See story on page A8. (Wolf Depner/News Staff)

Saanich Peninsula Lions Food Bank welcomed a recent donation that helped purchase $5,000 worth of breakfast items, which were dropped off July 14 by members of the North Saanich Fire Department.

“It’s an amazing donation,” said operations manager Tyson Elder. “We are very excited about this.”

The money from the CFAX Santas Anonymous Society bought 300 boxes of cereal, breakfast cereal bars, apple juice and juice boxes from Costco and Fairway Market. Staff from Morning Fresh Eggs, which donated eggs, purchased the items with a quartet of firefighters and helped deliver them.

Like their regional counterparts, Saanich Peninsula Lions Food Bank has seen a surge in demand as inflation is increasingly forcing individuals to choose between food and other items. Inflation, coupled with other issues, has also made it more difficult for the food bank to keep shelves stocked, especially with in-demand non-perishable items of high quality.

“Breakfast products are one of the most important things for us at the food bank,” Elder said. “Breakfast is one of the most important meals of the day and for us to get this stuff to families is just wonderful.”

RELATED: Saanich Peninsula food bank in dire need as demand surges but orders shorted

Christine Hewitt, executive director of CFAX Santas Anonymous, said the need for actions is apparent.

“Our philosophy is, ‘if there is need, we mobilize,’” she said. “We hope that people see that donating to an organization like Santas Anonymous, who can respond to a need in the community, makes a difference.”

People can also help by shopping with the idea of donating to the food bank in mind.

North Saanich firefighter Kurt Barner said inflation has affected everybody. He encouraged people to donate; boxes are available at the 986 Wain Rd. and 1665 McTavish Rd. fire stations. The department will be accepting food donations during its 50th anniversary celebrations on Aug. 27 at the Wain Road fire hall.

Elder hopes last week’s donation serves as an example for others.

“I hope that people see that our community has really stepped up to support us and support community members that are struggling. I really see it as a beneficial relationship between us and Santas Anonymous and the North Saanich Fire Department and so many other like-minded organizations who have just stepped up. It’s just wonderful.”

The department has a long partnership with CFAX Santas Anonymous, having raised more than $25,000 for the society since 2012.

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Wolf Depner

About the Author: Wolf Depner

I joined the national team with Black Press Media in 2023 from the Peninsula News Review, where I had reported on Vancouver Island's Saanich Peninsula since 2019.
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