Two local businesses are teaming up to raise money for the local Community Food Share. Simply Baked Catering and Samantha’s Emporium, both small businesses based in Winchester, started the initiative to do their part to ensure that those in the area who are falling on hard times still have food to eat.
The Times spoke with Cheryl Beasley, co-owner of Simply Baked Catering, to get more information on the initiative. Cheryl said that the t-shirts are tied to a promotion offered by Simply Baked which offers fresh bagels sold in batches of six every Thursday. The t-shirts, which are made by Samantha’s Emporium and are sold by Simply Baked for $25 each, proudly identify the wearer as a “Bagel Club” member on the front, with a quip on the back that says “On Thursday, we eat bagels.”
The t-shirts are sold at cost, with $5 from every sale being donated. Currently, the plan is for the campaign to run until Christmas. Cheryl revealed that she likes partnering with many local businesses, not just Samantha’s Emporium. She provided Planted Arrow and Iron Forge as examples of two other Winchester businesses with whom she has partnered.
When asked why the fundraiser is important to her, Cheryl answered that she has always seen local food banks as important, having previously run the farmer’s market in Chesterville. “There are people that really need help, especially now with COVID,” Cheryl told me. “It’s not easy. There are a lot of working poor around. We want to make sure that everybody gets help that needs help.”
The Community Food Share is a local charity serving the counties of Stormont and Dundas through four locations in Winchester, Morrisburg, Willamsburg and Finch. The organization primarily operates food banks, but also has other services available to support those in need, such as tax preparation assistance, community advocacy, and the North Dundas Christmas fund, the latter of which is the target of the t-shirt fundraiser. The Community Food Share operates primarily from local donations, as well as donations from corporate sponsors.
With the costs of both housing and food continually on the rise in recent months, there has perhaps never been a greater need for the support of food banks. “The food bank is very important. These people need help,” said Cheryl.
Anyone wishing to purchase a bagel club t-shirt can do so on the Simply Baked Catering website at www.simplybakedcatering.com/shop/bagel-thursday/bagel-club-t-shirt-fundraiser-for-community-food-share. Those wishing to learn more about the Community Food Share, or to make a donation directly, can do so online at www.communityfoodshare.ca.
Brandon Mayer, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The North Grenville Times