Cenovus Donates $20K to Bonnyville Friendship Centre

Money will support the Food Bank and Community Kitchen

Cenovus Energy has announced a donation of $20 thousand to the Bonnyville Friendship Centre. The money used equally to support the Community Kitchen and the Food Bank. Both services are open to members of the community, reports the Friendship Centre.

The Bonnyville Friendship Centre reports that the donation is enough to fund the Community Kitchen until spring of 2018, even if they don’t receive any other funding. It is estimated that the Food Bank will be able to operate through the winter months on Cenovus’ donation. The money donated was thanks to a community grant Cenovus offers, which the Friendship Centre applied for and was successful in receiving.

Both the Community Kitchen and the Food Bank have seen record usage numbers this year; which usage growing each month.  The Community Kitchen typically feeds 30 people per day and the Food Bank has averaged over 50 new clients each month.

Food Bank Usage

  • April 182 people  in 69 Households
  • May 145 people in 63 Households
  • June 242 people in 82 Households – 56 new clients
  • August 178 people in 75 Households – 51 new clients

*July figures were not available at the time of this article

PRESS RELEASE FROM CENOVUS ENERGY

Support for the Bonnyville Friendship Centre Community Kitchen and Food Bank programs continues to grow with Cenovus Energy providing a $20,000 donation.

“It was so heartwarming to have Cenovus Energy support this project. They answered the call for help immediately and have stood beside us in our efforts to bring wellness to all community residents. ” said Ashley Gaulton – Executive Assistant.

Cenovus’s donation will go towards meeting the rising demands of both the Community Kitchen Program and the Food Bank. The funds will support the Food Bank by allowing the purchase of food when the shelves are low and filling in the gaps for donated items. The downturn in the economy has hit many people hard and the use of these programs has doubled over the past year. In June of 2015 the Food Bank helped 114 clients; June 2016 they served 242 with 56 of those being new clients. The Community Kitchen serves 30 people per day including high school students and seniors. These programs have been established at the Friendship Centre for over 30 years and are used by over 5300 people annually.

“The Friendship Center provides such an integral service for the community and we know they need our support more than ever in these times. Cenovus is pleased to be able to continue our support to help meet the increasing demand,” says Andrea Ruste, Community Affairs Advisor at Cenovus. “We’re committed to giving back to the communities where we live and operate.”

As requests for support from residents in Bonnyville continues, the Bonnyville Friendship Centre has been focusing resources on strategic planning. Their goal is to ensure funds are used to their fullest and the underlying needs of the community can be met. Plans include healthy and budget friendly meals through the Community Kitchen as well as educational workshops for families.

“We are very thankful to Cenovus Energy for their continued support to the Friendship Centre. Their donation helps us provide much need services to community members.” said Lauri Fitzpatrick, Executive Director of the Bonnyville Friendship Centre.