Fill up the bus

A volunteer stocks shelves at the Prince Albert Food Bank in December 2016. The food bank saw record usage in August, when more than 1,000 hampers of food were handed out. -- Herald file photo.

The Prince Albert Food Bank is looking to a new fundraiser to help restock its shelves after a record-breaking summer.

In August, the food bank handed out more than 1,000 hampers of food, well above the 885 hampers they gave out in November 2015.

Prince Albert Food Bank executive director Wes Clark said it’s a staggering statistic, but not unexpected.

“In August you’re trying to get your kids back in school and there are all the costs associated with that, so it really puts a crunch on people,” he said.

“People are coming into town to start school and all of these factors really lead to August being busy.”

Despite the record-breaking usage, the food bank is holding up well under the strain. Clark credited a strong community response for helping them get through a few lean weeks, but with winter on the horizon it’s time to rebuild the stores.

They’ll be relying on local residents and businesses to help out once again to help out.

“The community at large has really been backing us up and that makes all the difference,” Clark said. “Without the community response we couldn’t tackle issues like this.”

As part of that response, the food bank is holding a brand new donation campaign this year called Fill a Bus. Residents are encouraged to bring cereal, oatmeal, canned goods, crackers and other food items to try and completely fill a First Student Bus in the Wal-Mart parking lot on Oct. 14.

For the rest of this story, please see the Oct. 7 online or print edition of the Daily Herald.