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Fill The Bus food drive exceeds previous year

December 13, 2019   ·   0 Comments

By Wendy Gabrek

Firefighters from New Tecumseth Fire & Rescue Station 1 Alliston, along side volunteers from Landmark Bus Lines including drivers and managers, and teens earning their high school community service hours (as well as some younger children of firefighters and bus drivers) participated in the fourth annual Fill The Bus food drive this past Wednesday, December 3.

Last year, the food drive saw 1,744 pounds of food collected, and $344 donations, and this year 1755 pounds of food and $1053.30 was raised. All donations benefit the Alliston Good Shepherd Food Bank.

Event organizer and fire fighter Terrina Williams told The Times they began this unique food drive to help the community help the food bank.

“When we collect directly from people’s homes it saves one errand for the residence to do at this busy time of year,” Williams said. “Also, if there is anyone with accessibility or child care issue that can’t leave their homes then they can still contribute for those in need.”

Williams said she decided to start this event because she could utilize both of her employers – Fire & Rescue and the bus company she drives for – because both were generous to allow for time and vehicles to be donated for the cause. 

“The OPP has their ‘Stuff A Cruiser’ and the local paramedics have their Toy Drive Campaign, so I thought Fire needed something too, and because it’s in our nature, we had to have a bigger vehicle, so a bus it is!”

This year, Williams said she was most surprised about the amount of people who showed up to help.

“As any volunteer organization knows it’s hard to get people to donate time and, in the evening, and after a day of work, it’s even more difficult,” she said. “We had more people in 2019 than in any previous year, and it was a great surprise and made me grateful for them all.”

In all, it took 33 volunteers to run the Wednesday night event. 

As for next year, Williams says they’re aiming to host Fill The Bus again on the first Wednesday in December – so long as the weather cooperates. 

“Christmas is really about giving and every year since the start of this event, the community I serve really amazes me with their generosity,” said Williams. “We have continued to have larger amounts food and financial donations every year. After four years of doing this, it looks to be stronger than ever, just like New Tecumseth all around.”


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