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Food Bank renovations expected to begin early May

Warehouse manager Wes Graham shows the Kamloops Food Bank building slated for renovations in May.
April 18, 2013 - 3:23 PM

Rain or shine, winter or summer - people line up outside the Kamloops Food Bank before it opens waiting for a food hamper.

A portable trailer across the road from the building has been craftily arranged to allow patrons in need of food a place to walk in, grab a hamper through the narrow passageway and exit at the other end.

The wooden stairs to enter and exit the trailer aren't ideal, but it's what they've got - for now.

Renovations are slated to begin May 1.

The Food Bank will have a new waiting area for guests.

It will also have enough space to store all of the food under one roof - rather than the three or four various locations throughout the city - and be a much safer environment for the volunteers who put in about 1,000 hours monthly.

Wes Graham, warehouse manager, said there isn't enough room to store all the 50,000 or so pounds of food that comes through the Food Bank every month.

"It's a good problem," he says.

But his modesty doesn't account for the cluttered boxes that pose safety hazards for volunteers or the multiple locations throughout the city needed to store the food.

He's been around the Food Bank for four years and admits the renovations have been a long-time coming.

Something his co-worker, Rebecca Crossan, agrees with.

"It's a bit chaotic," she says. "It's been years in the process. We're finally coming to the place now where we're about to start."

While both Graham and Crossan were unaware of the costs associated with the renovation, they said fundraisers and in-kind donations are taking care of the bill.

One generous volunteer has helped.

"She passed away and left $100,000 in her will for the Food Bank," Crossan said.

The renovations are expected to take about six months.

In the meantime, hours are being reduced beginning April 22 because there won't be access to the building and refrigeration systems to preserve food.

The updated Food Bank hours can be found online.

To contact a reporter for this story, email: jwallace@infotelnews.ca or call (250) 319-7494.

The Kamloops Food Bank has come up with a temporary solution to pass hampers from trailer to trailer through their windows.
The Kamloops Food Bank has come up with a temporary solution to pass hampers from trailer to trailer through their windows.

The Food Bank renovations will eliminate stairs, allowing those with mobility limitations better access when collecting a food hamper.
The Food Bank renovations will eliminate stairs, allowing those with mobility limitations better access when collecting a food hamper.

News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2013
InfoTel News Ltd

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