Shipping containers of donations heading to Nunavut
Food and other necessities being sent to replenish community's food bank
Members of the Society of Saint Vincent de Paul in Ottawa are loading shipping containers full of thousands of cans of food bound for Rankin Inlet, Nunavut, to help replenish the community's food bank.
More than a dozen volunteers were packing a shipping container outside the society's national office in Blackburn Hamlet as part of the organization's North of 60 Project. Another container is being filled by members in the city's west end.
"It's the necessities of life and it's the items that they really need and that are very expensive," said Claire Heal, the project's local co-ordinator.
"A jar of peanut butter, which we can often get on special for $3.99, up there it's $17.99."
Non-perishable items in high demand
Heal said providing non-perishable items helps people in need save money to spend on fresh produce.
The church in Nunavut, which runs the food bank, sent a list of 34 needed items, along with a request for some additional non-food items like sewing machines and an elliptical exercise machine.
The items were collected from various churches, schools and grocery stores across Ottawa and are set to help 40 families.
"When we have so much here, it's hard to see people who don't have anything or have very little. So, we want to make sure that their lives are sustained," said Darlene Keable, one of the volunteers helping load the container.
3-month voyage to reach North
Both shipping containers will be loaded onto trucks bound for Montreal on June 27, before being transferred to ships headed for the small community on the western shore of Hudson Bay. The containers are expected to arrive by late September or early October.
Each container will contain nearly 7,000 kg of food plus other items, said Heal.
The organization chose to ship the items because of the high cost of sending them by air. But it still costs around $6,000 to ship each container to the destination.