BATTLE GROUND — Volunteers and employees at the North County Community Food Bank in Battle Ground are getting ready for the 2016 Christmas Food Box and Children’s Gift Adoption Program, which is currently scheduled to take place Sat., Dec. 17, 7:30-10:30 a.m., at the Battle Ground Community Center, 912 E. Main St.
Food collection for this annual program is going on now. Food drives at different North Clark County area schools provide a large amount of the nonperishable food items that help make up the Christmas food boxes such as canned food and dry goods. Food drives at the school will continue for about one more week until collection boxes are picked up in mid December.
Each year, the food bank’s Christmas Food Box program provides more than 600 families with holiday food boxes. Last year, more than 650 families received food boxes through the program.
The boxes that are distributed at the community center each year are packed with several different food items, including all the fixings for a family holiday dinner such as a 10-12 pound turkey, cheese, butter, brown sugar and potatoes. The Clark County Dairy Wives also donate a gallon of milk for each box, and they are also the ones who donate the cheese. The 150-175 pound food boxes are also packed with a variety of canned goods, soups, flour, pastas, grains, cereals and more.
“Local businesses and private donors fund this additional program outside of the everyday normal food distribution provided by the North County Community Food Bank,” said Elizabeth Cerveny, executive director of the food bank. “Total costs for this program are estimated between $5,000 and $6,000 each year depending upon the market prices of the turkeys and other items purchased.”
The food sorting and food box preparations for this year’s Christmas Food Box program will take place Tue., Dec. 13 and Wed., Dec. 14, between 8:30 a.m. and 5 p.m., at the Battle Ground Community Center. Volunteers are always needed to help with the tasks of sorting and packaging the food boxes.
On Sat., Dec. 17, North County Community Food Bank families in need who have already registered for the food box program will line up on Fairgrounds Avenue off of Grace Avenue heading south towards the community center around 7:30 a.m. Volunteers will then load each vehicle as they pull up to the back of the community center.
To find out how to donate to the food bank’s Christmas Food Box program or just to the food bank in general, contact Cerveny at (360) 687-5007 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Find out more about the North County Community Food and its programs at www.nccfoodbank.org.