Sandy Doyle and Marie Kovacks were part of the army of volunteers who helped sort and assemble donations for the Cloverdale Christmas Hamper program last year.

Giving with the spirit of the season

There are many worthwhile charities and initiatives assisting people in the Cloverdale area. Here's a sample.

“It’s a time of year when… communities make extra efforts to care for one another.” – Stephanie Cadieux, MLA

With that sentiment in mind, we present a sample of the many worthwhile initiatives that assist the less fortunate in Cloverdale and area during the holiday season and year-round.

New clothes needed

Hyland House Cloverdale, a 10-bed facility for men and women, can always use donations of personal care items for clients.

Socks are in really high demand, along with new underwear (for men and women), toiletries, soap, lotion, toothpaste and toothbrushes, Chapstick, shampoo and conditioner, and even shaving razors.

Bus tickets are a current special request – staff don’t have any at this time to give out.

Donations of clothing are also gratefully accepted: T-shirts, sweat pants and sweatshirts (unisex, if possible).

Even getting coffee as a donation would be nice, added Peter Fedos, senior program manager of Options Community Resource Society.

Donations can be dropped off at the shelter, 17910 Colebrook Road, Surrey. Call 604-574-4341 for more information.

 

A community appeal

If you’re in need, the Cloverdale Christmas Hamper Program is there to help.

The local volunteer initiative distributes hampers and gifts to Cloverdale’s less fortunate residents.

Churches, schools, plus many businesses and organizations all work together to ensure Christmas comes to everyone in our community.

The 2014 food and cash donation drive runs to Dec. 14. More than 200 donation boxes have been deployed across Cloverdale, inside businesses and schools.

There also two upcoming food drive days: the first is Friday, Nov. 28 at Cloverdale Crossing Shopping Centre from 1-7 p.m., and the second is Friday, Dec. 5 at Hillcrest Village Shopping Centre, from 1-7 p.m.

Non-perishable food items, new, unwrapped toys for children and mall or store gift cards for teens are urgently needed – along with cash donations.

For more information on donating, volunteering or to apply, please call 604-574-4001, ext. 107, or email cloverdalechristmashampers@gmail.com.

Hamper pickup day is Dec. 20 at Pacific Community Church at 5337 180 Street, which acts as the nerve centre for the many volunteers who assemble hundreds of hampers in the ample warehouse. A toy room is set up so recipients can pick out presents for kids and teens.

In 2012, more than $50,000 in donations of cash and food helped 325 adults and 200 children, or about 300 families.

The program serves Cloverdale between 40 Avenue to 80 Avenue (north-south) and from 164 Street to 196 Street (west-east).

This year’s application deadline is Tuesday, Dec. 9. Application forms are at http://pacificcommunity.ca/ministries/cloverdale-hamper-program/pages/how-to-get-a-hamper.

Cash donations receive a tax deductible receipt. Please make cheques payable to Pacific Community Church.

Giving, a year-round thing

In Cloverdale, the Surrey Food Bank assists 80 to 100 families every two weeks from the food distribution centre at Zion Lutheran Church, 5950 179 Street.

Across the city, the Surrey Food Bank helps feed 15,000 people a month, and 41 per cent of clients are children and babies.

Food and fundraising drives are year-round, not just at Christmastime. Drop off food donations at Surrey Fire Halls,

Safeway stores, Save-on-Foods and PriceSmart stores, Real Canadian Superstores, IGA Marketplace, Costco, Extra Foods and Buy Rite Stores.

To donate to the Surrey Food Bank or to find out more, visit SurreyFoodBank.org or call 604-581-5443.

Cobs collects clothing

Cobs Bread at Clayton Crossing is taking advantage of one of its busiest days of the year to help Cloverdale’s less fortunate.

The store is collecting donations of warm winter clothing in aid of Hyland House Cloverdale, a 10-bed shelter for men and women that also has outreach programs to help homeless in the community.

Drop off day at Cobs is Dec. 24 – a day when a flood of customers pours in to pick up special orders on Christmas Eve.

The “bread lounge” – a covered tent – will be set up out back, where customers can pick up their orders, plus sample hot cider and baked goodies.

“This is our busiest day of the year, and many, many of our customers come in to pick up their Christmas day buns,” says Leanne Hosler, owner, adding this year, she wanted to encourage customers to help the community.

 

A warm appeal

Retailer Urban Barn is holding its third-annual Blanket the Country in Warmth Campaign. From Nov. 14 to Dec. 14, with every $5 donation, a brand-new fleece blanket will be donated to Gateway Shelter in Surrey. Urban Barn locations include South Surrey, #950 15045 32 Avenue, and Langley, Unit F2 20202 66 Avenue.

There are 47 retail locations in Western Canada. Last year’s campaign saw the donation of 10,000 blankets, a number the company hopes to build on this year.

Gateway Shelter is an emergency shelter that houses up to 22 men and eight women.

 

Campaign has ‘em covered

There’s still time to contribute to the Coats for Kids campaign.

The program distributes warm clothing, blankets and toys to children across B.C. The Lower Mainland Christmas Bureau, supported by the Greater Vancouver Home Builders’ Association (GVHBA), helps provide a brighter Christmas for families in need.

The association’s head office, 45 member companies at 6 locations in 13 municipalities are serving as coat drop-off sites from Nov. 24 to Dec. 4 for the 19th annual campaign.

“Last year, the response to Coats for Kids was heartwarming as Lower Mainland residents donated more than 3,000 coats, scarves, gloves, blankets and new, unwrapped toys and gifts for children, teenagers and adults,” GVHBA chair Ron Rapp said, adding this year they’re asking people to consider donating hoodies for hard-to-buy-for teens.

“We want to make sure we have everyone covered!” Rapp said.

Drop off locations in Surrey include Hazelmere Fireplace and Mantel at #1- 5422 176 Street in Cloverdale (9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday to Friday, and from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturdays); Shell Busey’s HouseSmart, Home Services, #2320 King George Hwy (9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Monday to Friday), and the Surrey Leader, 200 5450 152 Street (8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday-Friday).

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