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LETTER: Thanks to the many in Parksville Qualicum Beach who assist others

‘I’m grateful to live in a caring community’
(File art)

After accidentally buying a large, unopened bag of rice I didn’t need, I donated it to the Salvation Army’s Parksville Food Bank. I later learned that in many cultures, rice is a symbol of sustenance and nourishment.

So I read up on the Food Bank’s website: “The Food Bank provides supplemental groceries to about 500 families a month, prepares and delivers food to boost student lunches at local schools, and is the intake site for clients who need to access other crisis assistance.”

Then there’s Manna, a word meaning “divinely supplied spiritual nourishment.”

The Manna Homeless Society’s mission: “To support impoverished individuals, couples and families with food, transportation (bikes), laundry vouchers, hygienic supplies, clothing, rain gear and outdoor survival equipment …

“Increasing housing costs, isolation, illiteracy, the inability to access education, mental health challenges, physical disability, family dysfunction, social barriers …” The cycle of poverty presents daily challenges most of us can’t begin to imagine.

I’m grateful to such groups as the Salvation Army, the Society of Organized Services (SOS), and Manna.

I’m grateful to the supermarkets that donate food, so nothing goes to waste. I’m grateful to the volunteers and donors, and to the individuals and groups, whose generous gifts and time have made public housing possible for those who might otherwise be homeless. I’m grateful to live in a caring community in which people help people in so many ways.

Thank you, all.

Nicole Parton

Qualicum Beach