Filling seven 53-foot trailers with thousands of pounds with food donations is a task built for truckers.

Pro-Ex Transport Systems has tasked the community with helping them fill the trailers with donations for the Central Okanagan Food Bank, The Lake Country Food Bank and the Vernon Salvation Army Food Bank.

“There are just so many people that just don’t have anything and businesses were so greatly affected because of COVID and ours was affected positively because a lot of the things that we deliver is food and beverages, so we wanted to ensure that our area was being looked after as well,” said Catherine McCullough, Pro-Ex Transport Systems Ltd. president.

The second annual Pro-Ex Transport Systems haul away hunger food bank fundraiser will be popping up at grocery stores in Vernon, Westbank and Kelowna to collect non-perishable and monetary donations.

“With the forest fires and COVID still, it’s needed and that’s why are we going to continue to do this,” said Pat McCullough, Chief Operating Officer at Pro-Ex Transport Systems Ltd.

Last year, they donated 90,000 pounds of food and $10,000.

“We would like to beat last year. There are a lot of people that put a lot of time and effort into it, we have a lot of volunteers and it’s great seeing the smile on their face when they know it’s a success,” said Pat McCullough.

The fundraising duo are hoping to collect pantry staples during the food drive.

“Peanut butter, tuna, pasta, cereal,” said Catherine McCullough.

“When we get to the Vernon location… because the homeless go to the shelters and they don’t have can openers, we would like to see the cans with the tear-away lids or the peanut butter, things that they could eat, like the protein bars and juices and definitely water.”

The Central Okanagan Food Bank has been working in overdrive to meet the increasing demand in clients due to the pandemic and now to support anyone affected by the wildfires.

Trevor Moss, CEO of the Central Okanagan Food Bank, says they have seen a 23 per cent increase in clients since January, and the new clients are only accessing their services an average of five to six months.

“We are actually distributing fire hampers as we speak, we started last week and we are actually delivering another 50 to Falkland tomorrow, places like Sicamous, 100 Mile House, and so from this food drive, we will also take some of this food and help the people that are displaced,” said Moss.

The Central Okanagan Food Bank is also in need of supplies for young families, such as diapers, baby food and formula.

The Haul Away Hunger fundraiser schedule

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