This Holiday Season's spirit of giving will kick-off with the 18th annual Students' Union Holiday Food Drive, Nov. 22-24.
"This is a very important drive for the food bank," said SU vice-president external Julie Labonte. "We raise thousands of dollars [during the drive] and it helps sustain the food bank for the rest of the year, through the summer, until the following food drive."
The Campus Food Bank provides short-term emergency food hampers to hundreds of students, alumni, faculty and campus staff who require unanticipated, urgent support. Individuals use the Campus Food Bank for a variety of reasons, ranging from students running out of student loan money to unexpected expenses and job loss.
"[The Campus Food Bank] is such an important service because when people are really in those needs, it's normally an emergency need," said Labonte.
The holiday drive pits clubs against one another and was won last year by Fijis. This year the SU-sanctioned clubs will once again compete for this honourable title and the accompanying prizes.
"All the activities are club-driven," said Labonte. "They have to come up with their own, based on their creativity."
SU Volunteer Services manager Sue Wilmot explained that the contest works on an intricate point system based on the collection of money, food and creativity in food-collecting during the three-day drive.
Along with non-perishable food donations, the Campus Food Bank hopes to raise $5,000 worth of cash donations in order to purchase perishable items, noted Wilmot.