The Sexsmith Food Bank's new location. (Sexsmith and Area Food Bank on Facebook.)
The Sexsmith Food Bank has moved to a temporary location to better serve those in need. The town office has been its home for more than a decade, but it is closed to the public as a precaution against the spread of COVID-19.
The food bank is now operating out of a Sexsmith building located near Grace Bible Fellowship and owned by the church. The facility serves around 25 people a month from the communities of Sexsmith, Clairmont, LaGlace, Teepee Creek and Bezanson.
Sexsmith Family and Community Support Services Coordinator Naomi Robinson says the pandemic pushed the Town of Sexsmith to find a new home for its food bank. She says the town decided the relocation was needed to further social distancing.
“Sometimes bad times bring out super great things. We were able to get ourselves a building in a matter of hours and get ourselves moving.”
Before the outbreak, Robinson adds the recently built Sexsmith and area food bank committee was working for months on a plan to move the service but never thought it would happen so quickly.
Since the food bank was unable to acquire a phone, Robinson says residents can phone FCSS where they will take down a grocery list, send it to the facility, and arrange a pick-up time.
“We can’t have anyone in the food bank just because of our social distancing policy. We’re definitely going to try to have everyone with a little bit of food in their cupboards.”
Expecting the need to grow, Robinson believes the food bank will be able to supplement the growing demand. The service has recently been securing stock through the Tags Food & Gas in Sexsmith.
“We’re trying to figure out exact rules on how to accept donations. We have been in touch with other food banks to see what they have been doing. Hopefully, soon we can begin accepting donations.”
Robinson hopes that the new location will become a permanent home for the food bank. Although the church can’t confirm anything, she says it’s looking very likely.