The sound of fire truck sirens filled the early December air, but this time the firefighters were responding to the needs of residents who have fallen on hard times rather than a towering inferno.
The Sicamous Fire Department took their trucks on a drive around the community for their annual toy and food bank donation collection on Sunday, Dec. 2.
“That was excellent, we had great response from the community, lots and lots of toys,” said Fire Chief Brett Ogino.
The food and toys collected by the fire department and Eagle Valley Rescue Society benefit the Eagle Valley Community Support Society, which puts together hampers for needy families to be distributed before Christmas.
Ogino said the resource centre has a great group of volunteers and provides a beneficial service to the community.
“We’re very grateful for the fire department,” said Gwyneth Gau from the resource centre.
Along with the successful toy and food drive, Gau said the fire department collected $875 in cash to benefit the resource centre.
As Christmas approaches and the resource centre begins putting together the hampers, Gau said there are a few items they would be particularly grateful to receive. She said the resource centre’s food bank can always use more canned pasta sauce, pancake mix and syrup, healthy breakfast cereal and canned soups.
Gau also stressed that before making a food donation it is important to check the expiry dates as every year the centre has to throw away expired food they receive, which costs them money that could be better spent on feeding the hungry.
Along with donations of food, Gau said donations of gift cards to go in with the Christmas hampers are appreciated.
While the toy drive provides ample gifts for younger children, Gau said gift cards are a good choice for tweens. She suggested cards for the movie theatre in Salmon Arm, haircuts from a local barber or stylist, or for A&W, Tim Hortons or Subway.
The Eagle Valley Resource Centre distributes hampers on Dec. 19, 20 and 21.