Dedicated community aids in food bank win


The House of Lazarus Community Outreach Mission recently received a $3,764 cheque from Kraft Canada. 

The House of Lazarus, stationed in Mountain, was one of the few food banks Canada-wide invited to participate in the Kraft Food for Families Contest that began November 2011 and ended in February 2012.

 According to food bank coordinator Kim Merkley, there were only four food banks chosen to participate from Ontario. 

Merkley stumbled into the contest by accident when she filled out an online survey. She admitted that she had no idea that anything would come of completing the survey, but is now quite happy she did so.

The contest began on November 3, 2011 with an original completion date of January 31, 2012. For each online vote of support from their community, participating food banks received $1.

Due to the overwhelming response and success of the contest, a second phase was introduced on December 2, 2011. 

This second phase lasted for 10 weeks, ending on February 10, 2012. In addition to the $1 for each online vote, Kraft Canada donated $1,000 per week to the food bank with the most votes. Each week the totals were reset to zero.

The House of Lazarus was a recipient of one of these ten $1,000 bonus wins and, as Merkley pointed out, “we were competing against some pretty big cities.”

“It was very humbling. It was quite a coup for Dundas County,” added Pauline Pratt, executive director of The House of Lazarus. “We had 2,500 votes.”

“It shows the dedication and support we get from the community. It was a great campaign.”

Of the $3,764, there was $1,000 from a weekly bonus and $150 from a separate project with Kraft. The remainder consisted of dollars for votes.

While their reported goal is to serve North Dundas families, The House of Lazarus actually serves families in both North and South Dundas as well as families in the surrounding communities.

According to Kraft Canada’s contest website, “the response to the Kraft Food for Families initiative was truly inspiring.”

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