While many consumers cope with the low budget by not buying products in supermarkets, many food banks become a viable option for families in need to feed themselves. As toilet paper is an essential item, TP North Bay runs an annual campaign to raise this item for Canadian food banks.
Last year, TP North Bay collected 21,047 rolls of toilet paper for the campaign during the pandemic. “In eight years we have collected a grand total of 146,033 rolls to help the clients of 13 local food banks”, said Team Leader Ellen Faulkner.
This year, according to Faulkner, they have a goal of getting 27,000 rolls to help surpass last year’s total. “TP North Bay does our campaign every May at different stores, including our blue box drop locations”, explained Faulkner.
Peter Haddow, food bank coordinator for St. Andrews Church, sees the increase in the number of people resorting to food banks over the past two years, as food prices soar along with everything else. “Every week we have 50 or 60 people come to the food bank”, said Haddow. “That’s about 200 people a month, and we’re just a little one”.
TP North Bay has been running since 2014 when Angela Johnston received a call from Ellen Faulkner, who had decided that toilet paper, which was available in limited quantities at the North Bay Food Bank, should be a regular part of the grocery baskets.
The campaign will run from April 28 to May 28 with proceeds going to 13 local North Bay food banks. Those include the North Bay Food Bank, Salvation Army, St. Peters Church, Pro-Cathedral, St. Johns Church, St. Brice’s, Trinity United Church, St. Andrews United Church, Emmanuel Church, Lakeshore Missionary Church, Nipissing University Food Bank, Canadore College Food, Children’s Aid Society and Big Brothers & Big Sisters.
TP North Bay blue boxes will be set up at grocery stores around the city, as well as the Giant Tiger locations, Canadian Tire and Shoppers Drug Marts throughout May, and donations can also be dropped off at Allison the Bookman, Fire Station One on Princess Street and the Davedi Club.
Volunteers will also be on location at Freshco, Food Basics and Parker’s Independent Grocer Saturdays.