Food bank expanding hours to help working poor

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Sandra Hartman of the Petrolia Food Bank says they'll open one Wednesday night a month to help people who are working.

Sandra Hartman says people shouldn’t have to take time off work to go to the local food bank for help for their family.

But Hartman, the spokesperson for the Petrolia Food Bank, hopes that will soon change.

Hartman says until June, the doors of the food bank will be open two days a week; Monday morning as it is now and the fourth Wednesday of every month from 6 pm to 7:45pm.

“I want to help the working poor. I hate the fact someone takes off work to go to the food bank; it defeats the purpose,” she says.

Hartman says in the past people had approached her trying to schedule an appointment during their lunch hour so they don’t have to miss work. And she’s helped people during the evening from time to time. “That’s when I started toying with the idea.”

But it was put on hold when COVID-19 struck. The food bank had to make changes to make sure it could continue to serve those in need. Hartman that took a lot of effort.

Now that clients know how to work with the COVID-19 protocols, she wants to try helping people one Wednesday night a month. And she expects many people may find the new time convenient. “With home school right now, people can’t leave their kids even if they really need help,” she says.

Hartman says its a trial run until June. If it works, the food bank may continue the practice.