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Winnipeg charities face increased demand, driving up costs this holiday season – Winnipeg

Some Winnipeg charities are struggling to meet the increased demand for their services this holiday season.

On November 8th, the Christmas Cheering Committee opened the phone lines and was inundated with calls. In his first hour he had 13,000 and by the end of the day he had over 40,000.

That’s almost double the 23,000 total on the first day of last year.

Executive Director Shona Bell said:

Bell said her team expected calls on the first day, but not many.

“What we are seeing is that people who have probably never actually accessed our support before are coming to us for help. I’m doing my best for you,” she said.

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Last year, the organization provided nearly 17,000 food baskets to families in need in Winnipeg. His budget this year is 18,000, but Bell expects that number to grow.

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Winnipeg’s Christmas Cheering Committee plans to distribute 17,000 meal vouchers over the holidays

Volunteers are processing about 500 roadblock applications per day and are working to collect more.

Bell attributes the surge in demand to rising grocery bills. It’s Christmas he felt cheerleader too. Their Christmas baskets will no longer contain turkeys. Instead, these funds were reallocated to include items that could feed a family with just one meal.

In addition to the high number of applications, the board’s regular donor pool is also feeling the pinch.

“We are also grateful that those who have donated to us in the past have faced similar situations,” Bell said.

Despite tough times, Bell said the Winnipeggers continue to give generously of money and time and still have many volunteer positions to fill.

Operation Red Nose is another holiday charity looking for support this holiday season.

The ride-hailing service operates in November and December to get partygoers and their vehicles home safely. It’s his first return from a two-year hiatus due to COVID-19.

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Operation Red Nose cancels 2020 operations in Winnipeg, Brandon amid coronavirus

About 150 volunteers have signed up so far, which is far from the number we need.

“Each drive team needs three people,” says Winnipeg coordinator Shara Hinton. “From 30 he needs 150 volunteers, depending on the night he works.”

Hinton said there were slightly fewer volunteers signed up at this time than in previous years. She notes that the warm weather of late fall, combined with her two-year absence, may have caused Operation Red Nose to slip some people’s minds.

“I think a lot of people just haven’t realized it yet,” Hinton said.

Operation Red Nose has a database of past volunteers to recruit again. If there aren’t enough volunteers, those looking for rides can face longer wait times, Hinton said, although they try to get riders within 30 minutes of him. Few volunteers found it pushed up to 1 hour.

“We will run the program no matter how many volunteers we have,” Hinton said.

Both Operation Red Nose and the Christmas Cheer Board say they plan to help as many people as possible despite the challenges without being stretched too thin.

© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Winnipeg charities face increased demand, driving up costs this holiday season – Winnipeg

Source link Winnipeg charities face increased demand, driving up costs this holiday season – Winnipeg

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