The annual Stuff A Bus fundraiser, which took place over the weekend at Parkland Mall, set a record in terms of the number of donations received.
But the need still remains for the Red Deer Food Bank which faces an extreme cash crunch this month, said Fred Scaife, executive director of The Red Deer and District Food Bank.
He said cash donations overall for 2013 are down 50%. “We are food rich and cash poor. We are about $250,000 short of what we normally are for the year.”
He added the food bank has enough food to serve clients from recent fundraisers that have been held including the annual Stuff a Bus.
Over the weekend $47,000 in cash was donated to the Red Deer Food Bank and the Red Deer Christmas Bureau. Also, about 2,000 lbs of food was donated during the event as well.
“The cash donations were up about $15,000 over last year and every year seems to get better.”
But because of the overall cash shortage, Scaife said the food bank was not able to carry on with projects that were planned for this year and they also had to downsize their staff by two employees, adding that currently there are five employees doing the work of nine.
“We were planning on expanding into our new space (adjacent to the current food bank) but we’ve had to set aside any capital plans,” he said.
“It makes us more focused on the job at hand.”
He added he is hoping Central Albertans will open their wallets over the holiday season and help the organization out.
“The beginning of November to the end of December is the biggest time for us in terms of donations. We hope people out there in the community will help.”
For more information, call the Red Deer Food Bank at 403-346-1505.