With the big day approaching fast, the Christmas Spirit Campaign is coming up short in collecting food, cash and toys to ensure everyone enjoys a happy holiday.
As of Tuesday (Dec. 5), just $31,000 of a cash goal of $91,000 has been collected, while a food goal of 9,100 pounds stands at 6,500 pounds collected. As well, toys across all age groups are still needed to put under trees.
“We know Canmore is a bit of a last minute community,” said Spirit director Sally Caudill, “but when we’re short of both food and toys, we are concerned.”
The recent Royal LePage food drive was held on Nov. 30, but, with several other events taking place the same evening, donations were down – overall, there has been 30 per cent less food donated.
Donated perishable food is rounded out with healthy purchased items to complete Christmas hampers which will be delivered on Dec. 18.
“Toys are also a concern,” said Caudill. “We’re not where we usually are. Usually we have shortages for babies and teens, but this year, we’re short for all age groups.”
The deadline for toy donations is Dec. 11. Hampers include toys for children under the age of 17 and toys needed are those under $75 that any child would be happy to open.
Typically, said Caudill, food and toy donations come first, with cash donations rounding out the season’s offerings from the public. In the case of cash, last minute food and toy items still needed may be purchased, with some funds also going to the Bow Valley Food Alliance and other food security groups.
“In the end, our hamper deliveries are made on Dec. 18, so we work back from that date to know what we need,” said Caudill. “In the end, the Bow Valley always comes through.
“But if people are planning to give, it would help us out if you did so now, rather than later.”
For more information on items needed and what makes up a hamper, and how to make donations, visit www.christmasspiritcampaign.com. For non-perishable food items, campaign organizers ask that ‘best before’ dates be carefully checked.
Hampers are being organized for delivery now and donations can be dropped off at ATB, BMO, Boston Pizza, Bow Valley Ford, Elevation Place, Canmore’s FCSS Office at the Civic Centre, Hi Jinx, Outside Bike and Ski and Royal LePage.