Family harvests healthy holiday help

Oak Bay family makes a donation through Good Food Box program

Clockwise from top right: Cary Swoveland

When mulling over ways to give back, one Oak Bay family discovered it could give back all through 2015.

Britt Swoveland says she and her husband Jon, son Markus and in-laws Cary and Cindy Swoveland enjoyed a family Sunday dinner talk that turned to Christmas Day, which for the Swovelands, like many families, includes good food, gifts and a fun day with close family.

“We are very fortunate. Our family is blessed with good health, friends, loving family and happy homes,” Swoveland said. “But we realize for some, the holiday season can be a challenging time. Not everyone has the support they need. Not everyone has presents under the tree. Not everyone has healthy food to eat.”

They discovered a way to fulfill the healthy eating sentiment with a program that offers food to families for an entire year.

“Rather than heading out and shopping for items we like but don’t really need, we collectively decided to give some funds to a local charity to support those in greater need,” Swoveland said.

They discovered the Good Food Box program through the Fernwood Community Centre. It was established 17 years ago by lower income families and single moms to bring local produce to the area and bring household costs down, said Abby Cronk, family resource worker at Fernwood Community Centre. In 2005 FCC took it over.

“By combining our donation with our in-laws, we have a wonderful opportunity to provide healthy fruits and vegetables to a local family for an entire year,” Swoveland said. “We all really like the idea of giving locally, and the Good Food Box is run in such a manner (with mostly volunteers) to allow the donation to go directly to the cost of supplying healthy food to those in need.”

This year the Good Food Box seeks to raise $4,500 to supply 10 local families with fruits and vegetables for a year.

“The idea is to supplement their nutrition … and financially take some burden off them so they can focus their budgeting somewhere else,” Cronk said. “We service poverty, but we’re also serving people who are working two jobs.”

Families who receive Good Food Boxes pick up alongside all other Good Food Box customers, avoiding any opportunity to feel singled out. The program provides fresh vegetable and fruits not accessible at most food banks. Instead of a one-time food hamper, the group provides fresh food every two weeks for the year.

“It’s heartwarming to know that every two weeks a local family is picking up a bag of wholesome food that they otherwise would not have,” Swoveland said.

Go online to thegoodfoodbox.ca to donate or learn more about the program.

 

cvanreeuwyk@oakbaynews.com

 

 

Just Posted

Island Health issues safer drug-use tips ahead of music festival season

Health authority aims to reduce overdose risks at festivals

Federal government commits $9.1 million toward UVic Indigenous Law building

Contribution supports Canada’s first Canada’s first Indigenous Law program

Soul Shakers kick off free outdoor concerts in Oak Bay

Music fills the air at Willows Beach Park for series of concerts this summer

PRIDE on the Barge caps off last Friday of Pride Month

Starting at 5 p.m. with music from Rocksteady

National HIV Testing Day comes to the West Shore

17.1 per cent increase in new HIV infections in Canada between 2014 and 2017

VIDEO: Tributes flow on 10th anniversary of Michael Jackson’s death

Jackson received a fatal dose of the anesthetic propofol on June 25, 2009. He died at age 50

Greater Victoria wanted list for the week of June 25

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

POLL: Do you think the penalty should be increased for tossing a burning cigarette from a vehicle?

With grasslands and forests around Vancouver Island and across B.C. reaching tinder… Continue reading

Sandwiches and mascara could mean driving fines

RCMP say if you cause an accident well eating you could be penalized

Delta cat severely injured in animal trap was likely stuck for days, owner says

Blu, a three-year-old house cat, suffered severe damage to his hind leg after being stuck in trap for days

Vancouver Island woman assaulted after confronting thief

RCMP warn residents to call for police assistance

VIDEO: Killer whale steals fisherman’s catch off North Coast

Fishing duel results in eager orca snagging salmon in Prince Rupert

40 cats surrendered in apparent hoarding at B.C. home

Officers found the cats living among piles of garbage and feces, suffering from fleas

Campers hailed heroes in rock face rescue at Vancouver Island provincial park

The campers quickly noticed the man in distress and jumped into the river to swim across.

Most Read