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Banks organise food bank drive

JO BELWORTHY
Last updated 12:47 11/12/2012

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Dargaville & Districts

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Ebenezer Scrooge would be turning in his grave.

The massively wealthy but miserable, tight-fisted Charles Dickens' character despised Christmas and anything that brought happiness to people.

But whereas Scrooge hung on to his cash, Dargaville's banks have only goodwill in mind, organising a food drive to ensure those in need have a happy Christmas.

"It's a team effort and all the banks are participating," BNZ manager Chad Louen says.

People are being asked to drop off any food items (excluding fresh and frozen) to the bins at the town's banks.

They will then be passed on to the Community Foodbank for distribution.

Food bank volunteer Millie, who doesn't want her last name used, says she has noticed a steady increase in the number of people requiring food parcels this year.

"There used to be 30 a month on average and now we're heading into the 40s - there is definitely a greater need."

Millie says food is becoming harder to source for the food bank with supplies from the City Mission in Auckland diminishing since the Christchurch earthquake.

"Christchurch is still in great need and all the big firms are sending their excess there," she says.

Millie says even the drop-offs around town are not as patronised as they were.

The foodbank receives bread from the Salvation Army in Whangarei while money from grants, churches and donations is used to buy sausages and mince.

Millie is not sure how long she has been co-ordinating the food bank but reckons it is between 8 and 10 years.

"Time just slips away when you do these things and time doesn't matter."

She works alongside a team of about 20 volunteers who all do their bit to ensure the less fortunate do not go hungry.

"It would be wonderful if we could do without the food bank and not have to deliver parcels because that would mean everyone would have the work," she says.

She is modest about her input and just wants to thank everyone who gives to the cause.

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- Dargaville News

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