Last year the Christmas Hamper Fund distributed 167 hampers to local residents, and more might be needed this year in the wake of mill closures and curtailments. Photo: Barbara Roden

Christmas Hamper program gears up for another season

Last year 167 hampers were distributed, and more may be needed this year

For 20 years, the Ashcroft & Area Community Resource Society’s Christmas Hamper Fund has been helping residents of Ashcroft, Cache Creek, Clinton, Spences Bridge, Walhachin, the Ashcroft and Bonaparte Indian Bands, and the surrounding area by providing hampers containing all the fixings for a Christmas dinner, plus extra food and goodies, to those in need.

The program is now gearing up for another Christmas, and Christmas Hamper committee Chair Esther Lang anticipates that it will be another busy year as far as demand goes.

“When I first took over, we gave out 130 hampers,” she says, “but it’s been increasing. Last year we distributed 167 hampers.

“We’ve had fires and floods, and while a lot of these things mean that people temporarily need a hand up, sometimes it’s more long-term.” She notes that the recent mill closures and curtailments in the area might create even more need this year, but adds that they can never guess how many applications they will get in a given year.

“It’s a lot of by guess and by golly. We didn’t anticipate 167 requests last year.”

The Christmas Hamper committee is looking to partner with area businesses, industries, and community members to help provide food and funds for this year’s hampers. Non-perishable food items are welcome, as are monetary donations, and businesses are encouraged to have a box where people can place food donations. A list of participating businesses will be on the Ashcroft & Area Christmas Hampers Facebook page.

After Remembrance Day, the grocery cart at Safety Mart in Ashcroft — where shoppers can leave food donations for the Elizabeth Fry Society Food Bank, which is separate from the Christmas Hamper Fund — accepts donations for the Hamper Fund for a month. Donations can also be dropped off at the Ashcroft Community Hall between 9 a.m. and noon on Dec. 18 and 19.

The cut-off for applications is on Dec. 4. They can be made at the following locations:

Ashcroft (E. Fry office. Bancroft Street): Monday, Nov. 18 to Tuesday, Dec. 3, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. (except Food Bank days on Nov. 20 and Dec. 4; applications can be made from noon to 2:30 p.m.)

Cache Creek: Tuesday, Nov. 19 (Cache Creek Community Hall, downstairs), 1 to 3 p.m.; Wednesday, Nov. 20 (Equality Project, Stage Road), noon to 2 p.m.

Clinton (Health Centre, Cariboo Highway): Thursday, Nov. 21 and Friday, Nov. 22, 1 to 3 p.m.

Spences Bridge (Cook’s Ferry Band office): Tuesday, Nov. 19 and Wednesday, Nov. 20, 1 to 3 p.m.

Bonaparte Band (Health Centre): Tuesday, Nov. 19, noon to 2 p.m.

Applications must be made in person, and applicants must bring photo ID and proof of residency.

Lang says that volunteers are needed for sorting food and packing the hampers from Dec. 18 to 20, from 9 a.m. to noon each day at the Ashcroft Community Hall. The hampers will be distributed on Saturday, Dec. 21, with home delivery to all applicants unless applicants want to pick them up. Hampers can be picked up at the Ashcroft Community Hall and at the Clinton Fire Hall.

Cheques — made payable to Ashcroft & Area CRS/Christmas Hampers — can be mailed to CRS Christmas Hampers, P.O. Box 1137, Ashcroft, B.C. V0K 1A0. A tax receipt for income tax purposes will be issued by return mail. Any excess funds will be used for community projects as necessary, and any excess food will be donated to the E. Fry Food Bank.

If you would like to donate or volunteer, contact Lang at (250) 453-9085, or email

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

This year’s Smile Cookie campaign vastly exceeds expectations

‘It blew everything we expected to do out of the water’

William Griffin arrested in Houston homicide

RCMP have now arrested William Griffin, the man wanted in connection to… Continue reading

B.C. First Nation Chief Ed John faces historic sex charges

John served as minister for children and families under then-premier Ujjah Dosanjh

New Ashcroft water treatment plant is up and running

A grand opening and public tours are planned for Nov. 19

Suspect wanted for crimes in Kamloops, Merritt, Kelowna

Public asked to be on lookout for a burgundy Dodge Ram D-150 pickup

Teen with cancer whose viral video urged Canadians to vote has died, uncle tweets

Maddison Yetman had been looking forward to voting in her first federal election since junior high school

Rowing Canada, UVic investigate celebrated coach for harassment, abuse

Lily Copeland says she felt intimidated and trapped by Williams

Cleanup in the works after tanker truck fire leads to oil spill in B.C.’s Peace region

The province said the majority of the spilled oil likely burned away in the fire.

BC VIEWS: Action needed on healthcare workplace violence

While we’ve been talking about it, the number of B.C. victims has only grown

Closing arguments begin in B.C. case launched in 2009 over private health care

Dr. Day said he illegally opened the Cambie Surgery Centre in 1996 in order to create more operating-room time

MacLean says “Coach’s Corner is no more” following Cherry’s dismissal from Hockey Night

Cherry had singled out new immigrants in for not honouring Canada’s veterans and fallen soldiers

MacKinnon powers Avs to 5-4 OT win over Canucks

Vancouver battled back late to pick up single point

Poole’s Land finale: Tofino’s legendary ‘hippie commune’ being dismantled

Series of land-use fines inspire owner Michael Poole to sell the roughly 20-acre property.

Port Alberni mom takes school district to court over Indigenous smudging, prayer in class

Candice Servatius, who is an evangelical Christian, is suing School District 70

Most Read