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Community Rallies Together at Christmas

As the new Covid 19 variant, Omicron continues to spread across the world faster than any other variant to date, so has our community’s eagerness to help their neighbours in need this holiday season.

This Christmas, Fresh Food Weekly was involved in several community initiatives that have all been organized by members of the community who simply wanted to help others.

Christmas Beauty Product Drive

Throughout the last weekend before Christmas, Fresh Food Weekly delivered 21 gift baskets that were packed full of donated beauty products.

All these products were donated by local beauty salons and individuals in our community! Fresh Food Weekly was thrilled to receive so much help from many salons in the City of Barrie, including Le Cosmetics Bar, Suzette‘s Beauty Salon, Rush Hair Studio, Upfront Cosmetics, Envy Hair Salon, Slicker’s Salon, Giovanni & Perri, Blume Beauty Lounge, Venus Beauty Supply Ltd., Hairscapes Salon, Beauty & Babes, Black Rose Beauty Lounge, CanRad Beauty Limited, and Rinaldi Salon & Spa!

Christmas Meal Boxes

Another wonderful community initiative was organized by Lisa Peterson, the manager of the Thornton Farmers’ Market and owner of Stone Horse Farm. Lisa brought together several local farmers and food businesses to put together meal boxes at a reduced price and then sold 50 to people who wanted them to be donated to low-income families this Christmas. Each meal box included:

  • One 6-pound roasting chicken

  • 5lbs potatoes

  • 2lbs carrots

  • Squash

  • Broccoli

  • Ready-made stuffing

  • Cranberry sauce

  • One pumpkin pie

  • Plate of various desserts

  • Block of cheese

On the morning of Tuesday December 21st, Fresh Food Weekly and their volunteers met at Thorganic Farms to pickup and then deliver these 50 donated Christmas meal boxes to families all over Barrie.

None of this would have been possible without the help of the local farmers and food businesses who contributed their food: Cookstown Greens, Alliston Creamery, Integrated Farms, E.F.T Farms, East End Kitchen, R Family Farm, and My Grandma’s Farm.

Local Heroes Campaign

Each year, Lowe’s and Rona stores across Canada do a fundraising campaign called the Lowe’s Local Heroes Campaign, which occurs throughout the month of September to raise money in support of a local charity of their choosing. This year, Fresh Food Weekly was selected as this year’s recipient for the Barrie Rona store!

We decided to use the raised money to do a mega Christmas food drive for women who’ve resided at the Women & Children’s Shelter of Barrie at some point in time. On Thursday, December 23, 2021, Fresh Food Weekly gathered a group of 10 volunteers who helped with doing a big grocery shop at Costco, then transported the food over to Connexus Community Church and then delivered this food to 17 women from the women’s shelter.

Connexus Community Church was such a huge help because they let us use their front foyer and tons of tables to organize $2,850 worth of food!

We also had quite a few food donations as well! Rampage Coffee Co. shipped us a box of coffee packages all the way from Saskatoon! Continental Specialties & Imports donated four cheese wheels!

Miski Organics donated a car load of organic hemp hearts and quinoa:

Cookstown Greens donated beets and carrots, 60 Aileen donated onions and red potatoes, and Don’s Bakery donated so many boxes of various frozen pies, desert breads and butter tarts, we had to give our leftovers to the Barrie Community Fridge at 9 Churchill Drive!

This year was a huge success for helping low-income families in need. I am so proud to live in a community where helping others has become a priority. We are so blessed to have so many businesses who care about others and I can’t wait to do it all again next year!

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