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Cold Lake Christmas Hamper Project helping families this Christmas

20.17.10.CL Hampers
The Cold Lake Christmas Hamper Project is in full swing. Photo submitted.

COLD LAKE – The Cold Lake Christmas Hamper Project is off to the races.  

The Cold Lake Food Bank is partnering with the City of Cold Lake and Cold Lake and District FCSS in the Great Cold Lake Turkey Race to ensure families won’t go without a turkey dinner for the holidays.  

“Every year at this time, the whole community of Cold Lake joins together in generosity, energy, creativity, and a caring spirit to support individuals, couples, and families with a bountiful hamper of food for Christmas through the Cold Lake Christmas Hamper projected,” Cold Lake Food Bank director Phil Crump told Lakeland This Week in a statement.   

A food hamper contains a selection of non-perishable food, a turkey, potatoes, carrots, and bread for all meals and snacks on Christmas Day.   

“There will be leftovers for Boxing Day,” Crump added.  

The goal of the Cold Lake Christmas Hamper project is to provide good and satisfying meals on Christmas Day and to keep the food bank well stocked during the Christmas season and into the new year.  

Crump has been involved with the hamper program since he moved to the city in 1985 and has been blown away by the amount of food donated for families in need.  

“Thousands of kilograms of food have been donated over the years,” he exclaimed. “I have a vivid memory of a six-food skid of molasses sitting in the middle of a room waiting to be packed into hampers. I remember in the early years, packing and distributing hampers out of an empty retail store downtown. It’s been enjoyable working with hundreds of people over the years, collecting, sorting, and storing donated food and taping, packing, and delivering hampers.”  

To sign up to receive a Christmas food hamper, register in person at the food bank on Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and Fridays from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Current I.D., a home address, and a correct phone number are required. The deadline is Nov. 27.   

Monetary and food donations can be made in a number of different ways. Either through the mail to the food bank at 5216 55A St. or online through Canada Helps at   

“We appreciate the diversity of the food choices that are given during the Christmas season,” Crump noted. “It fills out hampers with all kinds of choices for meals.”  

Those looking to stop by the food bank are requested to call 780-201-6589 to make an appointment.  

Distribution of the food hampers will start on Tuesday, Dec. 15. The food bank will also be opened on Dec. 16 from 10:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and Dec. 18 from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. for distribution.   

Robynne Henry, Bonnyville Nouvelle

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