Generosity of residents fills up foodbanks

'It has worked really well'

MICHELE ONG
Last updated 05:00 04/12/2013
food bank
ROBERT CHARLES
TIME FOR GIVING: New Plymouth Food Bank manager Mike Merrick with some of the food collected from this year's food drive.

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Taranaki foodbanks are creaking with goodies after another successful food drive on Monday evening.

The New Plymouth Community Food Bank was flooded with "thousands of items of food" as residents dug deep into their pantry for the annual appeal.

Food bank manager Mike Merrick said the secret to a great food drive was a "generous community, great weather and enthusiastic volunteers".

Equally pleased with the drive was Hawera Foodbank chairwoman Hazel Robinson. "Our larder has filled up very well," she said.

"The people of Hawera and surrounding districts have been very generous. We are very grateful for them."

Mrs Robinson believed the donated items will keep the food bank going for at least six months.

Over at the New Plymouth food bank, hundreds of banana boxes packed with tinned goods ranging from soups to fruits competed for space when the Taranaki Daily News paid a visit yesterday.

Baked beans, tinned spaghetti and cereal were the most popular choices to donate, Mr Merrick said.

"We also have perishables, frozen meats and biscuits," he said.

A special Christmas category was also introduced to this year's drive and Mr Merrick received five boxes worth of presents and various festive treats.

"We haven't done it previously and it has worked really well," he said.

Students from both Sacred Heart Girls' College and Francis Douglas Memorial College also pitched in yesterday to help Mr Merrick sort the donated items.

"We have about seven months worth of food but we do get supplemented from various organisations," Mr Merrick said.

"We are very blessed."

He expects up to 100 parcels will be sent out over the December period.

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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