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Goodfellows Newspaper Campaign provided $12,000 to four local food banks



by Sylene Argent

Thanks to the generosity of the community during the 2018 Newspaper Campaign, and because of the dedication of the fundraising participants, the Essex Region Goodfellow was able to forward $12,000 to each the Essex Area Food Bank, the Essex Salvation Army, and the Harrow and McGregor chapters of the St. Vincent de Paul during its annual meeting on the evening of Tuesday, November 27. The event was hosted at Essex Fire Station #1.

  In addition to community members rising to the challenge, the Essex Region Goodfellows was able to provide the generous donations to the four local food banks because of the dedication of its members, local firefighters, members of area Knights of Columbus Councils, and St. Clair College firefighting students. These volunteers raised $53,156.44 through the 2018 Goodfellows Newspaper campaign, which took place at various busy intersection throughout the Municipality of Essex on November 16 and 17.

  Through the campaign, over $46,600 was collected through the newspaper drive. Corporate, mail, and memorial donations rounded out the total.

  “We really appreciate the effort, in some years [through] terrible weather,” Lonnie Jones, a volunteer of the Essex Area Food Bank said of the volunteers who ensure the large donation is available year-after-year. “Thank you to everyone. You help us feed our people.”

  Major Sam Roberts of the Essex Salvation Army was also appreciative of the donation. The Salvation Army is currently looking to raise $80,000 through its letter and kettle campaigns to fund its programs and supports for area individuals in need throughout the year.

  “Thank you for this, it is a major boost for our target,” he said.

Roberts said individuals who seek help at the Essex Salvation Army each have a unique story. “Some are very personal. Sometime they are so upset, they cannot talk…No one knows how good it feels [to help someone going through a difficult time] until you do it,” he said.

  Receiving this annual donation is something the Essex Salvation Army will never take for granted, he added.

  Ron McDermott, who was still serving as Mayor of Essex when the donation took place, gave credit to Bob Pulleyblank for staring this initiative around 15 years ago.

  In 2017, the four food banks each received around $11,000.

© 2020 The Essex Free Press ltd.

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