February 21st, 2024

Turkey donation helps feed a need at Thanksgiving


By Lethbridge Herald on October 6, 2023.

President of the electoral district association Jonathan Koopmans and food access coordinator R.J. Westra unload turkeys being donated by the Conservative Association Friday morning at the Interfaith Food Bank. Herald photo by Alejandra Pulido-Guzman

Alejandra Pulido-Guzman – LETHBRIDGE HERALD – apulido@lethbridgeherald.com

With Thanksgiving just around the corner, many families find themselves looking for ways to put food on the table in such difficult times, and both Food Banks in the city find themselves in need of donations to help those families and individuals.

So the Lethbridge Conservative Association donated 13 turkeys to each food bank, just in time for Thanksgiving dinner. 

Jonathan Koopmans, president of the Electoral District Association, said after unloading the first 13 turkeys at the Interfaith Food Bank Friday, that the turkeys are the result of a fundraiser the association held to give back to the community.

“It’s a great blessing to share with Lethbridge when we have our own blessings,” Koopmans said.

He said the turkeys were raised by, and purchased from, two local Hutterite colonies and then donated to the local food banks to benefit local residents. 

Neil Heaton, operations manager with the Interfaith Food Bank, expressed his gratitude and said the donation will help many members of the community. 

“It’s always a great donation, and Thanksgiving is one of our bigger times of the season when people donate,” Heaton said. “a lot of people are thinking about the food bank right now, so we just appreciate anything that anyone can help us with this time around and moving into Christmas season.” 

Heaton said donations are especially needed now after a recent increase in clients of about 30 per cent, as the cost of living continues to rise. 

“Food prices have really affected a lot of our donations. I think some of our donors are struggling themselves, but we are still receiving enough donations to continue to serve our clients.”

Darren Babin, operations lead at the Lethbridge Food Bank, said he has also seen an increase in clients, and the turkeys will help fill the need. 

“We just received 311 pounds of turkeys just in time for Thanksgiving, which is immensely helpful for our families that we do serve,” Babin said. “We’ve seen an increase of about 100 hampers per month since last year, and the demand is growing. It’s wonderful that we get a bunch of turkeys right before a holiday.”

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