Amherstburg Food & Fellowship Mission hosts annual general meeting, appoints new board

 

Amherstburg Food & Fellowship Mission president Tim McAllister also accepted a $100 donation from Carolyn Davies.

Amherstburg Food & Fellowship Mission president Tim McAllister also accepted a $100 donation from Carolyn Davies.

The Amherstburg Food & Fellowship Mission held its annual general  meeting Sept. 24 and honoured volunteers that have helped the mission for ten years. Liz Foslett receives her award from mission president Tim McAllister. Ten-year volunteer Sheila Johnson was absent.

The Amherstburg Food & Fellowship Mission held its annual general
meeting Sept. 24 and honoured volunteers that have helped the mission for ten years. Liz Foslett receives her award from mission president Tim McAllister. Ten-year volunteer Sheila Johnson was absent.

The Amherstburg Food & Fellowship Mission elected its board of directors for 2014-15. They include (front row, from left): Anne Fox, vice president Shirley Hitchcock, Gabrielle McKinnon, Lana Talbot, Denise Sgrazzutti, Tammy Pasceri, Bart DiPasquale.  Back row (from left): president Tim McAllister, John Drop, Darrell Sampson, Paul Kascjak. There is still one position open for the board of directors.

The Amherstburg Food & Fellowship Mission elected its board of directors for 2014-15. They include (front row, from left): Anne Fox, vice president Shirley Hitchcock, Gabrielle McKinnon, Lana Talbot, Denise Sgrazzutti, Tammy Pasceri, Bart DiPasquale. Back row (from left): president Tim McAllister, John Drop, Darrell Sampson, Paul Kascjak. There is still one position open for the board of directors.

By Ron Giofu

 

The Amherstburg Food & Fellowship Mission held its annual general meeting (AGM) last Wednesday night with members updated on the mission’s operations over the past year.

Mission president Tim McAllister described the past year as “very successful” and credited the members of the mission and the community in general for making it happen. He said they look to improve every year and improvements over the past year have included being able to purchase two new chest freezers to accommodate their food bank “as there is an apparent need in our community for the mission’s work.”

McAllister indicated the mission would continue to build and develop new partnerships and maintain current ones. The mission will continue to modify its programs to meet the needs of the community with the resources available. One of the partnerships the mission maintains is with the court system, as McAllister pointed out they provide placement for young offenders. The mission also supports high school students with obtaining volunteer hours needed for graduation.

“Our motto is ‘people helping people.’ It can mean different things to different people, but what that means to me is what do people need when they are struggling? What do people need when they need to be challenged to do something different out of their comfort zone? What can change the life of another person?” said McAllister. “Life can be very challenging most of the time. As we live our lives, we need a lot of help along the way. We face so many challenges at every turn. It is important for us to have people in our lives that will get behind us to tell us how we can do it and how we can get unstuck.”

The mission and its volunteers encourage people through their breakfast, hot meal, baby food and emergency food bank programs, McAllister stated.

“We can only do this through (the community’s) generous monetary donations and your untiring dedication and efforts to others,” he added.

People in Amherstburg and surrounding communities are still having trouble making ends meet and McAllister said the number of people accessing the mission’s services for hot meals is continuing to increase. He reported that the number of volunteers is “stable” and that fundraising campaigns “continue to be strong.”

Fundraising efforts over the past year have included a Sunday brunch at Pointe West Golf Club, barbecues at Walmart and Sobeys, the annual golf tournament, a Tambola that has “grown into a major event for us,” and a World Hunger Awareness fundraiser at No Frills.

“The main thing we would like to put emphasis on is our fundraising efforts as we continue to rely on our volunteers, their ideas, their efforts and their passion,” said McAllister. “At the same time, we continue to rely on the generosity of our community, working side-by-side as much as possible.”

The Amherstburg Food & Fellowship Mission is associated with the Windsor-Essex Food Bank Association and “have implemented procedures and requirements that satisfy our founders.

“Our reporting is transparent and assures that we are accountable and are utilizing public funds appropriately that are entrusted to our management,” McAllister added.

McAllister thanked the board of directors for effort and sacrifices.

“We’re all volunteers,” he said. “We do it from our hearts to help.”

In addition to McAllister, those with one year remaining on their terms include John Drop, Darrell Sampson, Gabrielle McKinnon, Denise Sgrazzutti and Lana Talbot. Those elected to two-year terms last Wednesday night were Shirley Hitchcock, Tammy Pasceri, Bart DiPasquale, Anne Fox and Paul Kascjak. There is one vacancy left on the board. Volunteer staff includes general manager Kim Cabanaw, merchandizing co-ordinator Violet McAllister and bookkeeper Joanne Guitar.

Hitchcock, the mission’s vice president, said a lot of people between jobs use the mission and when those people get jobs, they give back to the mission. She stated that between Jan. 1-Sept. 24, the mission served 11,184 hot meals, distributed 531 food baskets and helped 40 families.

Honoured at the AGM for ten years of service were volunteers Liz Foslett and Sheila Johnson.

The Amherstburg Food & Fellowship Mission is located at 298 Victoria St. S. and can be contacted by telephone at 519-736-9140 or on the web at www.aburgmission.ca.

 

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