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Essex church continues long-time support for food bank



by Adam Gault

With Christmas less than one week away, the true spirit of the season is not lost on members of the Essex Christian Reformed Church. Devoted volunteers continue to support and collect donations for the Essex Area Food Bank, as they have for the better part of the last 10 years.

Albert Spitse, a member of the church, understands the importance of having access to food during difficult times. He lived through the Dutch famine of 1944-45 as food and fuel was cut off by the occupying Germans in his native Netherlands during the Second World War.

“We went through the Hongerwinter [hunger winter] in Holland when the war was on, and we know what hunger is,” Spitse explained. “And most of the people in the church, they still know what hunger is, the old-timers. They feel that should work now to help the other people.”

The Essex Christian Reformed Church works year-round to support the food bank, hosting movie nights, serving chili lunches, and collecting non-perishable food items, all in the name of supporting the charity.

Spitse noted he is happy to see more younger people becoming involved in supporting the food bank, with his church recently collecting around 500 non-perishable food items by its Trick-or-Treaters this past Halloween.

“We have all the older people do it, and all the young people taking over, so that’s a good thing,” Sptise said. “I think our church does really good, and if other churches and people get the idea that this is a good thing to do.”

Essex Area Food Bank organizer, Gerry Belanger, explained the members of the Essex Christian Reformed Church are providing an invaluable resource when it comes to supporting the food bank, and expressed gratitude for their efforts.

“We sure appreciate this church, because they do get involved, plus they’re doing all of this almost every week,” Belanger explained. “It’s the whole year, not just December, and we appreciate that.”

The Essex Area Food Bank is located at 492 Maidstone Ave., and is open Tuesdays and Thursdays (except holidays), from 8:30 AM to 1 PM.

Donations are always welcome and can be accepted in person.

© 2020 The Essex Free Press ltd.

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