By Chad Ingram
Local lake associations are donating thousands of dollars to Haliburton County's food banks amid the COVID-19 pandemic and those who've donated are challenging other associations to do the same.
Food banks are experiencing increased demand amid the ongoing pandemic as many county residents are laid off from work with demand up about 20 per cent so far.
The South Lake Association of Cottagers and Residents donated $1000 to the Minden Community Food Bank and is challenging lake associations throughout the county to follow suit.
"They asked me to issue a challenge to the rest of the lake associations" Paul MacInnes chairman of the Coalition of Haliburton Property Owners' Associations told the Echo . "Within 12 hours [the food bank] got another $1000 donation."
As MacInnes was on the phone with the newspaper he got an email from a lake association in Highlands East announcing it was donating $300 to the food bank in Wilberforce. The Redstone Lake Cottagersí'Association has donated $1500 to SIRCH Community Services as it increases the number of frozen meals it is providing in the community.
The Maple Beech and Cameron Lakes Area Property Owners' Association has a $500 cheque on the way to the food bank in Minden and president Murray Adam told the paper he expected an additional $200 or so to be donated by members of the association's executive. MBC is also challenging other lake associations to donate.
"We're grateful for what the lake associations are doing to help us" said Joanne Barnes manager of the Minden Community Food Bank. "We welcome anybody who's lost their job to come here. We are here to help. There is no shame in coming here for help."