May 25th, 2024

Charity Checkstop nets toys and food for Christmas Hope


By Dale Woodard - Lethbridge Herald on November 30, 2021.

Herald photo by Dale Woodard - Lethbridge Police Service officers take donations at the Lethbridge Police Service Charity Checkstop over the weekend at the Enmax Centre.

For the second year, the Lethbridge Police Service Charity Checkstop was set up in the parking lot of the Enmax Centre Sunday afternoon.
A typical southern Alberta breeze blew through the four-hour checkstop as members of the LPS and and both the Lethbridge Food Banks and the Lethbridge Interfaith Food Bank braced themselves, but motorists nonetheless drove up to the flashing lights to make a drive-up donation.
This year’s beneficiary is the Christmas Hope campaign, a collaborative effort between the Interfaith Food Bank, Lethbridge Food Bank, Lethbridge Family Services (Angel Tree), Salvation Army (Toys for Tots) and My City Care (Shop of Wonders).
When the final numbers were crunched, this year’s LPS Charity Checkstop brought in 792 gifts, 585 kilograms (1,291 lbs) of food and more than $1,260 in cash and gift  cards.
Though some vehicles dropped off a single present or bag of food, one anonymous driver backed up a dump truck filled with gifts.
As Lethbridge and southern Alberta dealt with another year affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, LPS Const. Stewart Kambeitz said it was difficult to set an exact goal on how much money and donations they hoped to raise.
“I know it’s been a dynamic year for everyone, lots of changes going on, especially between 2020 and 2021 with restrictions and everything,” said Kambeitz. “We’re just happy with anything we can get for the community. We’re really happy with the response we’ve had so far from everyone.”
Despite some light Sunday traffic – last year’s check stop took place on a Saturday – motorists still pulled up with unwrapped toys and food donations, which earned them a window visit from Santa while police service dog Myke kept an eye on the proceedings.
“The food bank has brought some candy to give out, little trinkets and treats to give back for anybody who wants them,” said Kambeitz. Our members really like doing things like this and events like this to showcase we have resources to help everyone and we just like being able to do that and give back when we can. They’re all here on volunteer hours and on their own time. Everybody likes to give back and contribute as much as they can.”
Plans are already underway for next year’s Charity Checkstop.
Donations for the Christmas Hope campaign will be accepted until Dec. 20. For more information on the campaign, visit https://www.christmashope.ca/

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