Salvation Army kicks off Hope After Hunger fundraising campaign Saturday

Lending a helping hand

Volunteers will be out at five Central Okanagan Save-On-Foods locations Saturday to kick off the Salvation Army’s “Hope After Hunger” summer fundraising campaign.

The annual 60-day campaign raises money to help those experiencing poverty in the community, with things like grocery and gas gift cards, hygiene items, transportation costs, rental subsidies, utility payments, language assistance, financial literacy and mental wellness.

“It is not enough to offer transactional programs and services,” Salvation Army Captain Jennifer Henson said in a press release. “One in 11 Canadians live in poverty and the Central Okanagan is no exception. Using an empowering transformative approach, we can restore dignity and hope to those who are struggling.”

The Salvation Army works with people in the community to “identify the root causes of their unique situation.” Henson says the “most significant barriers” include employment, income, housing, food insecurity, and childcare.

One local example Henson highlights is a man who had to have emergency surgery to remove his gall bladder, which put him out of work for six weeks.

“His housing was in jeopardy,” Henson said. “The Salvation Army was able to pay a portion of his rent and give him some grocery gift cards and now he is at home focusing on his return to health and getting back to work.”

Last year, the Salvation Army subsidized nearly $100,000 worth of clothing, furniture, new mattresses, sleeping bags, pillows, tents, and household items from their thrift stores to low-income people.

Rotarians and volunteers from Scotiabank will be stationed at all five Save-On-Foods in Kelowna and West Kelowna from noon to 6 p.m. Saturday collecting donations. Those looking to donate online can do so here.

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