News Release

Manitoba Mormons Celebrate 10-Year Partnership With Winnipeg Harvest

From July 13 to 18, members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and community members in Winnipeg, Selkirk and Portage la Prairie, Manitoba, participated in the Church’s annual summer food drive for Winnipeg Harvest that resulted in a donation of 108,852 pounds of food. More than 500 volunteers distributed donation request flyers to over 60,000 homes. Residents were invited to leave donations of specific non-perishable food items on their doorsteps on the morning of July 18. Volunteers collected and sorted donations from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. that day.

Regional Safeway and Peak of the Market food suppliers matched all donations. Additionally, the Church food warehouse (also known as a bishops’ storehouse) in Lethbridge, Alberta, donated 26,000 pounds of food to Winnipeg Harvest.

John Moore, the initial Winnipeg Harvest Food Drive co-ordinator, recently reflected on the project’s growth. “We wanted to use our member resources to help Winnipeg Harvest and did a pilot project of about 4,000 homes. From there, we kept increasing the number of households until we reached our resource limit at 60,000 homes. It has been a wonderful experience to be part of helping get more than 500,000 pounds of food for Winnipeg Harvest, which provides much needed food assistance through the hard summer months into the fall.” John and four generations of his family participate in the drive each year.

Chris Albi, communications co-ordinator of Winnipeg Harvest, commented, “The dedication and commitment of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is amazing, especially during the summer season when donations take a dip. The summer food drive is a big undertaking, but this dedicated group of individuals make it happen and make our job of feeding hungry people that much easier.”

Current Latter-day Saint Winnipeg Harvest Food Drive co-ordinator Wayne Drozdowski emphasized the importance of the effort. “We need to take care of each other, we need to watch out for each other, we need to comfort each other. … The Lord has said, ‘I say unto you, be one; and if ye are not one ye are not mine’ (D&C 38:27).”

This year marked the 10th anniversary of the Church’s summer food drive for Winnipeg Harvest. To kick off the event, the Selkirk, Manitoba, Church congregation hosted a pancake breakfast for members and community friends. The festivity included a visit from and a donation to the food bank by Manitoba finance minister, the Honourable Greg Dewar.

Winnipeg Church members and volunteers celebrated this milestone with a community block party and carnival. Among the attendees were representatives from the City of Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service; Janice Lukes, acting deputy mayor of Winnipeg; Dr. Gordon Giesbrecht, Progressive Conservative Party candidate for Winnipeg South; and the Honourable Kerri Irvin-Ross, Manitoba minister of family services.

Lukes commented, “I am so thankful for the work The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints does in our community. Every year for the past 10 years, the Latter-day Saint members’ outreach into the community has resulted in overwhelming support for Winnipeg Harvest. We are a much stronger, healthier and richer community working together.”

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