Emergency services food drive set to make rounds

Fenz personnel will be hitting the roads next week to collect canned goods for various foodbanks....
Fenz personnel will be hitting the roads next week to collect canned goods for various foodbanks. Some of the firefighters who will be out collecting are (from left) Senior Firefighter Antony Mason, Firefighter Tom Singleton, SFF Aimee Taylor, Qualified Firefighter Drew Parkinson and Station Officer Stuart Slade. PHOTO: LINDA ROBINSON
If you hear loud sirens down your street next week, that is the Dunedin emergency services call asking you to bring your extra cans to your gate for collection.

In first week of December every year Dunedin’s emergency services go around the streets to collect cans from residents’ homes to give to various foodbanks around the city in an annual Christmas foodbank can drive.

The food drive will be running in Mosgiel and surrounding areas on Monday from 6.30pm till 8.30pm and in the Dunedin City area on Thursday from 6.30pm till 8.30pm.

Dunedin Central Station Senior Firefighter and event organiser Aimee Taylor said the cans collected on the night filled foodbanks for the entire year.

Any dried food or surplus food collected was used to help families for Christmas and through the summer holidays.

"The vehicles just drive around the streets, so there will be a noise vehicle and a collection vehicle.

"People are encouraged to come out with their kids and make a donation and we can tell their kids about giving back to the community," SFF Taylor said.

Defence Force reserves, Dunedin Scouts and many other groups will be helping out along with NZ Police, Fire and Emergency NZ and Hato Hone St John.

"We get behind our foodbanks because all emergency services see the need in the community for support, probably more so than anyone else."

Almost 250 volunteers had signed up to help out next week, and last year the team collected over 700 boxes of food for foodbanks run by Presbyterian Support Otago, the Salvation Army and St Vincent de Paul.