“No reasonable request will be refused” Central Food Bank President Shirley Cler- mont as the organization tries to meet an anticipated spike in food hamper requests this year. gibility will be more flexible this year. “We tried our best but some had to be refused,” she recalls. “This year, we will not refuse anyone who has a reasonable request.”

tween $80 and $100 in provisions. Since the start of the year, theMain Street service, which helps about 225 people on a regular basis, has experienced a steady growth of nearly 15 per cent in the number of individuals and families who have come to rely on the food bank to help get them through each month. “The result has been tremendous pres- sure on the Hawkesbury Central Food Bank to be able to lend a helping hand in time of need,” the organization says. Clermont says: “I can tell you first hand, that it is not easy seeing so many of our residents coming through the door. The pain on their faces and hearing their per- sonal stories of struggle. This downturn in the local economy is clearly having a seri- ous impact.” The food bank is about to launch two major events which it relies upon to sus- tain it for the next year. The Adopt a Fam- ily campaign is a fund-raiser in support of families during the festive season. For a $100 donation or more, a donor can en- sure a family receives a hamper. Also, La Guignolée will be held November 22 to 24 at the Hawkesbury Laurin Your Indepen- dent Grocer. “In order for these two campaigns and others throughout the year to be suc- cessful, the Hawkesbury Food Bank needs community partners. We need individuals, government and industry to step forward now and join us in our ongoing struggle to support our citizens. Whether you donate food, cash or your time, we’d be forever grateful,” says the food bank. At the same time, the HCFB is hoping to find a building owner who will provide it with a rent-free location. The current prem- ises cost between $18,000 and $20,000 an- nually. The total budget is about $100,000. A 1,500-square-foot space is required. Contact the food bank at (613) 636-0666 or drop by 548 Main Street E . Santa Claus returns December 1 HAWKESBURY | Santa Claus pays an early visit to Hawkesbury December 1 when the annual night-time Christmas parade is held, beginning at 7 p.m. For those wishing to take part, the dead- line to register is Friday, November 23 at 4 p.m. For details, call 613-636-2082 or 613- 632-0106, extension 2255. An important organizational meeting will take place on Wednesday, November 28 at 7 p.m. at the Robert Hartley Sports Complex commu- nity hall. The event is organized by the recreation department and the Business Improve- ment Area Commission. As in the past, every entry will be judged by a panel of judges who will award prizes to the best floats. The parade starts from the complex on Higginson Street, proceeds west to James, north on James to Main and east on Main to Abbott. Don’t forget that December 2, from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. Santa will be at the Jardin des pionniers on Main.

HAWKESBURY | “If a person has a good reason to ask for our help, nobody will be refused.” That is the pledge of new Hawkesbury

While the food bank refused some re- quests for Christmas food baskets in 2011, Clermont relates that the criteria for eli-

Last year, the food bank prepared 185 food baskets. This year, the group expects to distribute 300 baskets, containing be-

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