Tonight I was fortunate enough to be a last minute guest addition (thanks Tamara) for the Food for All Seasons Spring Gala, an annual fundraising event presented by Edmonton’s Food Bank. Held at the Sutton Place Hotel and hosted by CTV’s Erin Isfeld, the event was an opportunity to show support for the food bank while meeting some really interesting people.
While networking and great conversation was the focus, we did learn a little about what Edmonton’s Food Bank accomplished in 2009:
- A total of 81,572 kilograms of food was provided to groups on a one time or special request basis
- Over 190 agencies, churches, and food depots worked with the food bank
- More than 15,000 people were served by the hamper program each month
Accomplishments, yes, but also a reflection of the need that Edmonton’s Food Bank serves. Each year, the warehouse distributes more than 3.3 million kilograms of food. We were reminded of just how important the organization is to our city – one in six Edmontonians under the age of 18 will go to bed hungry tonight.
The theme for the event this year was “A Taste of the Orient” and the menu reflected that with wonton dumpling and spring golden chive soup, spicy thai chicken spring rolls, baked black sesame crusted salmon, and lychee creme caramel for dessert. Very tasty!
Cary Williams, co-chair of Edmonton Next Gen and one of Avenue Edmonton’s Top 40 Under 40 for 2009, was the guest speaker tonight. I thought he did a great job combining food and his passion for Edmonton. Cary said that “food is universal” and that “it’s the glue that unites families and communities together.” He stressed that the city is a stronger community because of the work that Edmonton’s Food Bank does. Cary chose to live in Edmonton because of the people that live here and care about the city. His call to action was to be mindful of the importance of the food bank, and to share it with others.
The gala also featured a silent auction with a wide array of items (everything from opera tickets to a bluetooth headset) and the chance at winning 1/4 karat yellow and white gold ladies’ diamond solitaire ring, courtesy of All-Lock Rescue. It looked like there were lots of bids on the silent auction items!
The Spring Gala is just one of the many events organized by Edmonton’s Food Bank each year. I really enjoyed the evening, but I understand the event will be re-imagined for next year, so stay tuned for something new!
You can see the rest of my photos from the event here. If you’d like to make a donation or get involved with Edmonton’s Food Bank, you can learn more here. You may know that they are running the Expressions of Hunger photo and literary contest right now – you can vote for your favorite entries here!