Late last week a group of Amherst area entertainers came together to reprise John Lennon’s iconic hit Imagine to help raise awareness toward poverty and hunger issues in this community.
Every year as we enter the holiday season, people express their generosity by making donations of food and money to the Amherst Food Assistance Network. At the same time, a group of Amherst churches come together to offer the Christmas Cheer program that makes sure no family goes hungry over the Christmas holiday period.
Unfortunately, as good as this spirit of Christmas giving has to make the community feel good, the plight of the hungry is not just a seasonal occurrence – it lasts all year and the most recent statistics from the food bank indicate that the need is growing.
Despite what the naysayers say about those living at or below the poverty line, the fact is there are too many people struggling to make ends meet. Even those with jobs can fall on hard times, whether it be a medical or family situation. Many fail to realize they are one missed paycheque away from relying on the food bank for help.
The key message is the food bank is an integral part of our community and it needs to have support throughout the year.
Kudos to those organizations that have gone above and beyond the call of duty in helping Amherst’s hungry by hosting fundraising events such as the Y Service Club’s food drive, Pumpkins for Poverty, the Amherst Wesleyan Church’s concert for the food bank and the recent concert at First Baptist Church that raised more than $5,000 for the food bank.
If you haven’t yet made a contribution to the food bank now would be a good time to start, and instead of making it a seasonal habit, make it a monthly one. Besides the warm feeling that comes with helping others, you’ll be playing a part in showing this is a community that really cares.