Tag Archive for: Non Profit

Nicola Valley Food Bank

Not Just  a Food Bank

Serving the Community on Merritt BC Canada

One of the more important social services in Merritt is the Nicola Valley Food Bank.  Therefore this organization is instrumental in filling a gap where people have to decide between shelter or food.  There are many people in the Merritt area who do not have enough financial support or low paying jobs that can’t make ends meet and therefore rely on the Nicola Valley Food Bank located in Downtown Merritt BC Canada.

 

Nicola Valley Food Bank Shelving

Nicola Valley Food Bank Shelving–Tom Reynolds Photo

The Program of the Nicola Valley Food Bank

Of course the main function of the Nicola Valley Food Bank is to provide nutritious food to those in need.  However, there is more to the food bank than just the delivery of food.   The food bank has created many successful partnerships in both the non profit sector and the business sector. It is these alliances that  go along way to make the system work.

Sharing with other organizations

One of the organizations the Food Bank works with is Ask Wellness  which is a national program to help improve the lives of people.  One of their major focuses in Merritt is the housing component.  Many of Ask Wellness’s clients also are those of the Nicola Valley Food Bank.  By working together the two groups can see that the clients are properly fed with nutritious food.

The Merritt Soup Kitchen is another group that the Food Bank Deals with.  Sometimes one organization or other will get a donation of food that is greater than can be used immediately and therefore there is an exchange of the excess so nothing goes to waste.

School District 58 and Strong Start work with the  Food Bank to provide food for the Strong Start Program.

The Business Community is on Board

Certainly, the major grocery stores are on board with the food bank.  When Wal Mart, No Frills and Save-on-Foods have products that are reaching their “best before date” they send them to the food bank.  While these items are ending their retail life they still are OK to eat.  While these big companies are contributing greatly there are a number of other businesses that chip in such as Starbucks, Dollar Tree, Pharmasave, A&W an now Mr Mikes.

No Frills Supports Food BsankNo Frills Supports Food Bank
Dollar Tree Supports Food Bank

Dollar Tree Supports Food Bank

A&W Supports the Food BankA&W Supports the Food Bank Mr Mikes Supports the Food Bank
Save on foods supports Foo Bank

Save on foods supports Foo Bank

 
Walmart Supports Food BankWalmart Supports Food Bank Starbucks supports Food BankStarbucks supports Food Bank Pharmasave Supports the Food BankPharmasave Supports the Food Bank

Nicola Valley Food Bank Staffing and Volunteers

The success of any not for profit is in its staff and volunteers and the Food Bank is no exception.  Derlanda Hewton is the General manager and her enthusiasm and vision have filtered to the staff and volunteers.

At the time of my visit to the Food Bank, the following were the staff and volunteers.  Vanya Beck was the Administration assistant and intake person.  She has a reassuring personality that works well with the clients.

Keith Walliser is on the food desk and he brings a world of knowledge to the Nicola Valley Food Bank because of his many years in the grocery store business.  Also on staff are Edwin Feldman, inventory Clerk and Henry Krause, Driver.

Volunteers are Georgina Johnny, driver and on call, Brenda Fahlman and Rosemary McNeil, both portion control.  Finally, we have Ashley Davey.

Fund Raising

Like most non profits fund raising brings a significant amount of money (or food) for the operation of the  Food Bank.  Therefore community groups such as the Merritt Centennials put on food drives during their season.  Out right donations from people are also greatly appreciated

This year the Food Bank participated in a national fund raising event called the “Coldest Night of the Year”.  Consequently this fund raiser is catching on and should be bigger next year. The Centennials supported this event in a big way.

21-22 Merritt Centennials

21-22 Merritt Centennials-Tom Reynolds Photo

Future Plans for the Nicola Valley Food Bank

The current location of the Nicola Valley Food Bank is strategically located to serve its clientele but unfortunately it is too small to meet the needs of the organization and therefore are looking for a larger space.

They wish to add an education centre to teach things such as selecting nutritious foods, cooking nutritious foods and household budgeting.

In addition they need more space for preparing the Christmas hampers.  Each year they have had to go and find a space that is large enough for this task and be reasonably priced (free is best).

Lastly, these are ambitious goals and if you want to be apart of that apply to be on the Board of Directors or take all the action in by volunteering at the Food Bank.  Call Derlanda Hewton at 250.378.2282.

Nicola Valley Food Bank

Merritt British Columbia Canada

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Art in Merritt BC

Art in Merritt BC was on the move in October 2020.

Let’s get artistic in Merritt 

Art Gallery in Merritt BC

2051 Voght St, Merritt BC

Art in Merritt BC at the Art Gallery and Gift Shop moved to 2051 Voght Street after almost 20 years at the old Courthouse on Nicola Avenue. The Nicola Valley Community Arts Council took the plunge and took over enough space in the heritage Jackson building to have an office, a Program Space, our Gift Shop and a Gallery Exhibition space.

After our move, Art in Merritt BC is Back in Action

Two weeks of moving and intense action to spiff up the place, and we were back in action. In a big way!

At least, for our restricted Covid 19 times. We are still waiting for a return to full workshops and music events. Even Friday night Open Mic is on hold!

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1st Art Show in the New Space on Voght Street

On Oct 15/20, we held our first Art Show in our new space in Merritt BC,  “Art for the Love of It”. Prolific local Artist Jean Kiegerl filled the walls with her work, past and present. Joining her was the creative stained glass duo Glenn and Susan Parkinson of Twin Willows.

The Gift Shop space, adjoining the Gallery, was full of artisan work, from pottery to weavings, so there was lots to look at! Locals and visitors flocked in, masked and socially distant. We doubled our usual show numbers!

Art and Music Reception

A week into the Art Show we held a Reception, held over 6 hours and by invitation, to manage the social interaction we are used to at our events. And for only the 2nd time this Covid year, we enjoyed live Reception music. This time Paul Mozin and Desiree Dunbar played us a little jazz. (I would do that again!)

Music in Merritt BC

Art Show Reception with Paul Mozin and Desiree Dunbar

Shop local!

In mid November, when our first Art Show in our new digs came to

Winter Art Show, Merritt BC

Winter Artisan Show

an end, we switched up to our 5th Winter Artisan Show.

30 local artists and artisans filled the whole spacious space with gifts- practical, creative, fun and beautiful works. And in a year when there were no craft fairs to go to,  we had a flow of people in for the weeks leading up to Christmas Eve.

Who’s who at our Arts Council?

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I really want to talk about the people in the Arts Council, and all our artists and artisans! We have a motivated group making decisions in our Nicola Valley Community Arts Council. It was a lot of work and decision making to get us down to our new space from the old Courthouse. For now, I’ll just send kudos out to everyone who made this move, this change, happen.

Thanks everybody!

Active Arts in Merritt BC, 2021

We are looking forward to an active Arts year here in the Nicola Valley! For more on our NVCAC and Art in Merritt BC, visit here.

After a short holiday break, we are open again January 8th, 2021!

Our extended hours are Wednesday to Saturday, 11-6pm

Sunday 12-4pm

NVAC Facebook and Instagram

NVAC Gallery Facebook

Thanks for stopping by! Jano Howarth

Remember…Express yourself!

Art Gallery in Merritt BC

Merritt BC Art

Art Show “Art for the Love of It”

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 Merritt, BC, Canada

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Considering Participating in Movember in Merritt?

The Good, The Bad & The Ugly

Movember Musings from a Goatee Greenhorn

 

I remember hearing about Movember in Merritt BC. Some called it “No Shave November”.  However, back in high school I thought it was an awful idea. No, I don’t mean the millions upon millions of dollars in charity raised each year for vital causes like mental health and cancer treatment! I just meant that I was a scraggly teenager. I had inadvertently participated in every previous Movember without much to show for it. But times have changed.

Wiser Movember in Merritt

I’m a twenty something year old man now. I have my own place and I drive around in a responsible midsize sedan.  Perhaps most surprisingly, after a recent camping trip when I forgot my shaving kit, I looked in the rearview mirror as I got on the highway back home and decided I had begun my clumsy foray into the world of ‘stache ownership. Therefore, I had to decide? Was I in or out on this ‘stache movement? 

My Movember in Merritt

While I can’t say that my newfound crumb catcher is a result of a Movember pledge – this was more of a mid-September thing. The convenient thing about being early is that I can pass some potentially life-saving advice. Advice passed down to any readers who might be considering, or already well on their way through a no-shave challenge. Without further ado, here’s the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly of participating in Movember’s most popular campaign, a month without shaving.

 

merritt movember blog intro picture

I got this nice picture while out camping. Let us know if you’d like to hear more about this spot!

The Good: New (and Bizarre) Compliments

I was lucky enough to get by the most awkward stages of stache development. Hiding  in the woods for nearly a week will do the job. If you’re not able to isolate from society for 3-6 days and let the “did your shaver break or are you keeping that?” days roll by that way, just try to tough it out! You’re doing this for charity and to look more like Chris Hemsworth; both very honourable causes. 

No-One Recognizes You After No-Shave

Anyway, regardless of how long it takes you to grow your ideal facial hair. Do not worry, and especially during these bizarre COVID times, friends and acquaintances will be seeing the new look for the first time anyway. We tend to recognize people by their faces, so significantly changing up that familiar face has a way of getting people to really tune in; what I’m trying to say is that you were always a handsome son of a gun – they’re just noticing it more!

merritt movember blog post camping

I had gone a few days without shaving by this picture. Luckily I got to spend those days outdoors!

The Bad: Patches, Invisible Hairs, and More

I was fortunate enough to have spent the formative days of my goatee journey toasting up marshmallows and reading by the campfire. However, once I got back to work, I realized just how out of sorts the whole thing was panning out. While I was gunning for a tidy, definition building goatee, I was a bit more Inigo Montoya and a bit less Walter White. There’s a few things going on here. Therefore it is important to note any burgeoning beard is going to come with a handful of patchy and uneven spots. And yes, these do eventually fill in! Perhaps more interesting however, is the breadth of colour that the average mustache is likely to represent.  

Reality

In real life, you’re liable to see your regular hair colour, about three or four shades on either side of it, gray(!), black and “invisible hairs”.  This mix-match of colour is easily remedied in the movies with a little beard dye. If the colour does not suit the cause then you can deal with it, either by taking matters into your own hands or consulting a pro. Local beauty salon TC Hair & Medspa offers an intriguing one hour long beard colouring service that’s likely to assuage even the most picky among us. Check them out and tell us how it goes!

The Ugly: Remember Those Marshmallows I Mentioned?

As you might have surmised by the title of this section, you’re going to be sharing your food from now on out. In other words the good news is you’ve got a tea strainer with you wherever you go! The bad news is, it’s also a soup strainer, crumb catcher, marshmallow shredder, and a few other things I won’t get into. However, you can style your stache and rein it in to prevent some of this. Although long term you’re going to need to learn to keep on top of this new problem. I’m serious about this one. There’s an entire YouTube channel online dedicated to keeping food out of the face furniture. In addition,  you’re going to eat a little bit of mustache hair. Sorry. At least you know all those famous bearded celebrities are, too!

In Conclusion

There we have it – everything you probably never wanted to know about Movember participation. Jokes aside, participating in a fundraiser challenge or even just a show of solidarity like this is a very commendable endeavor. This cause has been supported in many different and interesting ways by the Movember Foundation since it’s inception and we’re lucky to have a challenge on our hands that is arguably even more do-able in the current COVID situation. Consequently, and unfortunately,  other raffles, runs, and competitions have had to take the year off

Movember in Merritt BC

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