Longboard Volunteers

Warmest Gratitude for 2022 Holiday Season

As we settle into the start of the new year, we wanted to recognize the generosity of those who helped support the Food Bank and Christmas Bureau through the holiday season! Over the month of December, the Food Bank was able to facilitate the Christmas Bureau program thanks to the overwhelming generosity of our community. The program has two different community elements. One, the opportunity to directly impact a family or senior by sponsoring them and through donations so we can provide food and gifts so that everyone can experience the holiday.

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Holiday Hours 2022

Holiday Hours 2022

Holiday Hours 2022

Holiday Hours

Saturday December 24th – Closed
Monday December 26th – Closed
Tuesday, December 27th – Closed
Wednesday, December 28th – 10am-2pm
Thursday, December 29th – 10am-2pm
Friday, December 30th  – 10am-2pm
Saturday, December 31st – 10am-2pm
Monday, January 2nd – Closed

Help Spread Joy this Holiday

’Tis the season of giving once again, and Abbotsford’s Christmas Bureau offers a few ways to support our neighbours over the holiday season.

 

One option is a direct sponsorship where sponsors are matched with a family or senior in the community. Sponsors are asked to provide food items from a set list and gifts for their matched family which they then deliver directly to their door They communicate ahead of time to find out their needs and the recipients enjoy the personalized gifts and food options.

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Toys for Tots Event to Collect Gifts at Sunday Event

The 10th annual Toys for Tots event is being held this Sunday, November 27th at the Clarion Hotel and Conference Centre. The event collects toys and donations for the Christmas Bureau program of the Archway Food Bank.

Community members are invited to bring gifts and enjoy a free buffet breakfast along with entertainment at the drop-in event from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

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Truck full of donations

Reflecting on the fall of 2021

Amid an unprecedented pandemic, the Fraser Valley experienced unprecedented flooding in November 2021. Residents watched helplessly as their residences and businesses filled with water. As thousands of residents were suddenly evacuated and cut off from their workplaces and loved ones, hundreds turned to the Archway Food Bank for basic provisions and non-perishable food items.

With the flooding came disruptions to supply chains which caused food shortages. For those already accessing the Food Bank anxieties were running high as reserves of food and resources to travel to other towns to purchase supplies are often out of reach.

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15th Auto Mall Food Bank Drive Continued!

Fifteen years ago, the Dealers of the Fraser Valley Auto Mall decided to organize a large donation to the Archway Food Bank of Abbotsford. The event grew each year and in view of the current circumstances, 2021 has seen huge generosity. On December 22, 2021, in the showroom of MSA Ford, Steve Magown, manager of the Fraser Valley Auto Mall presented a cheque in the amount of $19,000 to Rebecca Thuro and advised that, with last-minute donations, the total amount for 2021 would increase.

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Archway’s Toys for Tots Collects Over 1,500 Toys

The Archway Toys for Tots event collected more than 1,500 toys and $24,000 for gifts for children, youth and seniors on Friday, November 26th. 

“We weren’t sure how the turnout would be with the ongoing flooding, new location and new format, but once again we were amazed at how many people took the time to purchase and drop off a toy so others could have a better Christmas,” said Rebecca Thuro, a supervisor at the Archway Food Bank.

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Connecting during Christmas

Connecting During a COVID Christmas

by Tracy Rahn (Christmas Bureau Coordinator) and Rebecca Thuro

If there is one thing that connects us all as human beings, it’s the deep desire to be seen. To be known. To feel that we belong. It is, in the simplest terms, the need for connection – this has been especially highlighted in a year where isolation is necessary. I (Tracy Rahn) experienced some of the most profound moments of connection, of empathy and understanding at this year’s Christmas Bureau. I found it peeking out from behind masked faces, passing sets of eyes that we sometimes may not even recognize as our neighbour or old acquaintance.

 

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Tammy’s Story

by Lucas Driediger

I was first introduced to Tammy earlier this Fall. Although she had used the Food Bank off and on in the past, the pandemic and changed things. With some newly diagnosed health issues, contracting any new sickness has created new challenges.

Thankfully, the combination of her positive attitude, strong demeanor, and community support have helped her get by in this time.

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Lifelong Impact Header

Life Long Impact of One Christmas

In dark times like these, it’s stories of hope that lift our spirits. We’d like to introduce you to Kihci Têpakohp Iskotêw Iskwêw (Emily Henry) a current board member at Archway Community Services. She is a Néhiyaw (Cree) person, originally from Ochapowace Band, Saskatchewan and she shares a personal story of how the compassion of strangers made a lifelong impact at Christmas when she was a child.

Her story is one of hope and how its effects can ripple through time.

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Toys for Tots Response

Toys For Tots Response

From the beginning of the planning process to the eventual cancellation of Toys for Tots Drive Thru, nothing could have prepared us for this year. Planning an event during a pandemic is not for the faint of heart! Knowing that the event was a huge driving force in making Christmas possible for 1,500 children was all the motivation we needed to continue to adjust the plans as guidelines changed. It was this fact that united the volunteers, sponsors, partners, and community.

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Toys for Tots Drive Thru 2020

Toys for Tots Christmas Drive Thru 2020

We are so thankful to be able to continue the tradition of kicking off the Holiday season in the true spirit of Christmas at the re-imagined Toys for Tots Drive-Thru – hosted by Clarion Hotel (formerly Quality Hotel) on November 27th from 7:00 am-10:00 am. No one could have predicted how different this year would be. That’s why the return of sponsors, partners and community support and means so much more!  

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Reflecting on December

by Rebecca Thuro
(3 minute read)

Every year we enter the Christmas season with some loose ends that need a touch of the miraculous. This year we needed a building to host the Christmas Bureau toy room and a way to raise $1.2 million by December 31st. Feeding 3,300 people doesn’t get easier at Christmas. It requires even more engagement from our community. And that is just what we found.

 

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