Donations were down slightly for this year’s “Reason for the Season” clothing driving for Langley’s homeless residents, but people still dropped off enough to fill the back of a small pickup truck, said organizer Cierra Foster.
“We still got a ton of clothes,” Foster said, following the Saturday event at the George Preston recreation centre parking lot.
This year, she emphasized the need for feminine hygiene products and clean socks, and said donors responded accordingly.
Foster said she will distribute the supplies direct to the homeless population this coming weekend.
She said the handout will be based on both direct approaches to people, and letting the homeless know where a still-to-be-decided distribution site is located using flyers.
If there’s anything left over for the Langley distribution, she plans to bring it to the homeless community in Maple Ridge and surrounding areas.
Four years ago, Foster said she felt she wanted to do something for the community, so she started the donation drive, and it’s become a holiday tradition for Foster and her friends and family.
Foster now studies social work at the University of Victoria, and said she’s always had a passion for helping people on a social level.
“It’s something I’ve always cared deeply about.”
Foster’s father is a homeless resident of the Fraser Valley, so she said homelessness is not something she can ignore.
“Growing up my dad has always been homeless. When I’m walking on the streets and I see someone homeless, I can’t just see past them. [When] every Christmas, and every year gets cold, that comes to mind.”
In the past while delivering donations to homeless communities, Foster has run into her dad, and added that he is “proud” and “happy” that she does the drive.
“It’s a moment for us to see him and spend time with him,” she added.