Close to 600 volunteers were out on the street starting Thursday for the annual Goodfellows newspaper drive.
It is the 107th year of the annual event which brings in roughly 40 per cent of funds utilized each year by the organization which provides food boxes throughout the year to those in need.
This year, it is has become even more critical for Goodfellows to reach its goal of $350,000 raised by the selling of newspapers given that demand at the help agency has increased due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
“I know we have been busier than before,” said Bruce Tait, organizer for Goodfellows newspaper drive. “We have been handing out an increased number of food boxes and this year we have now added lunch bags that we give out to the homeless.
“Our expenses (to purchase food) have also gone up, so that is what this drive helps support.”
Volunteers will be stationed across Windsor, Tecumseh and LaSalle at various intersections asking for donations of any size in exchange for the newspapers. They will be out in the streets all day Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Volunteers will be wearing masks for personal health safety.
The Windsor Star has long been a partner in supporting the Goodfellows newspaper drive.
Due to the pandemic, Goodfellows was only able to stage a modified newspaper drive last year — so to avoid personal contact between volunteers and drivers — that only generated $231,000.
That has made support for this year’s newspaper drive and reaching the $350,000 goal even more critical, Tait said.
“If the community can help Goodfellows out this year that would be great,” he said.