Foodbank needs year-end top up

Palmerston North residents are being advised to check their letterboxes because plastic bags with a bright orange stickers showing the slogan, "get in the mood . . . fill me with food", should be arriving this week.

They're being delivered courtesy of Palmerston North's food banks, which are encouraging people to give generously for their annual food drive on Saturday.

The Salvation Army and Methodist Social Services are teaming up once more to refill and restock their supplies to help the city's most needy.

Salvation Army community ministries manager Kevin Richards said normally 150 parcels get handed out every month, but the demand in December increases to nearly 500 food parcels.

He has appealed to people to spare a few items from their cupboard to help others this Christmas.

"If you eat it and if you use it, then people who are struggling to feed their families will too.

"They're not any different to us, they're just having a hard time putting food on the table."

The drive has been rewarding in the past, with more than 50,000 food items collected last year.

Mr Richards was hopeful this year's haul would top that number.

"People are happy to support the food drive because we all understand that people need to eat.

"When times get tougher, people want to help more and they dig a little deeper and giving to the food bank is a relatively easy way to help," he said.

Come rain or shine, more than 200 volunteers will be trawling the streets sounding sirens and collecting bags.

Mr Richards said any non-perishable items would be accepted.

Manawatu Standard