Doreen Jones says Community Cupboard is looking for a new home. The local non-profit organization gives out free clothing, food and more every Thursday to families in need with children. (Jenna Hauck/ The Progress)

Doreen Jones says Community Cupboard is looking for a new home. The local non-profit organization gives out free clothing, food and more every Thursday to families in need with children. (Jenna Hauck/ The Progress)

Chilliwack Community Cupboard in need of new home

Fundraising dinner and dance planned to bring in money to help families with kids in need

A local non-profit group which hands out clothing, food and household items at no charge to families in need is looking for a new home.

“Without a new location we will have to close at the end of the year,” says Doreen Jones, co-founder of Chilliwack Community Cupboard.

On a weekly basis, the organization helps about 120 children and gives out 500 articles of clothing — all during the small two-hour window they’re open every Thursday.

“Our goal is to help the kids and therefore help the whole family. Ultimately they will learn better in school and be more successful in their future,” she says, adding that they help about 40 families every week.

But come Dec. 31, they won’t be able to help those families if Community Cupboard has no place to go. They’re currently looking for a space on the north side of the highway, preferably in the downtown area.

“Ideally we would like 1,500 square feet, 1,200 would be OK, 1,000 square feet we could manage with,” says Jones. “We’re getting kind of desperate.”

Community Cupboard is completely volunteer-run and has been around for nearly six years.

READ MORE: Chilliwack middle school hopes to fill the cupboard

They receive monetary donations from Chilliwack Elks, Chilliwack Firefighters Charitable Society, Atchelitz Women’s Institute, Vancity and Riverside Construction in Abbotsford. People have donated items like non-perishable food, clothing (baby to adult), shoes, books, and kitchen supplies. Sardis Bakery gives them bread every week and the Salvation Army donates fresh produce to them on Tuesdays.

Community Cupboard then doles everything out to families with children who need it most.

“It’s like a thrift store for free,” says volunteer Joyce Douglas.

“We try to make this as non-judgmental as possible so that they feel comfortable coming in. It’s a social environment, it’s a safe place,” says Jones. “We don’t ask them a bunch of questions. If they feel they have a need, then they have a need as far as we’re concerned.”

Community Cupboard first started out in a portable at Chilliwack middle school in December 2013. In the summer of 2017, they had to leave due to an increase in class size at the school, so they moved into what was then the former University of the Fraser Valley campus on Yale Road, which is where they are currently located.

READ MORE: Chilliwack’s Community Cupboard saved by UFV offer

RELATED: Chilliwack school board plans for an integrated arts school for grades 8-12 at old UFV location

The campus was purchased by the school district in December of last year with plans to transform it into an integrated arts school, and so Community Cupboard will have to pack up and move again.

Jones and the other volunteers figure wherever they move to, they’re looking at a minimum of $2,000 a month for rent, but they’re hoping someone has a space for them at a discounted rate, or better yet, free.

“We really believe we have to have a year’s worth of rent in the bank because we don’t have any source of income,” says Jones. “We’ve never had to pay rent up until now — we expect we will have to, that’s why we’re having a big fundraiser.”

On Saturday, Sept. 28 Chilliwack Community Cupboard is having a fundraising dinner at the Chilliwack Curling Club.

It’ll be a roast beef and salmon dinner with a live DJ from Mint Entertainment. There will also be a silent auction and a 50/50 draw.

They had a similar fundraiser in April which brought in $4,000.

Jones says Community Cupboard would not be able to operate if it weren’t for the generosity of the community.

And they know their hard work in helping the community every week is worth it. Not only do they get appreciation from their clients, but they’ve recently been nominated for a Chilliwack Business Excellence Award for non-profit.

“Somebody has recognized that what we’re doing is worthwhile. That makes us feel good,” says Jones.

The Chilliwack Community Cupboard fundraising dinner is at 6 p.m. (dinner at 7 p.m.) on Saturday, Sept. 28 at the Chilliwack Curling Club (45550 Spadina Ave.). Tickets are $50 or a table of eight for $360. For tickets, call 604-845-3367 or email chilliwackcommunitycupboard@gmail.com.

They are open to the public Thursdays from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. Chilliwack Community Cupboard is located at 45635 Yale Rd. (former UFV site). Enter around the back of the campus off Meadowbrook Drive and look for the “Midtown Church office” sign. Donations can be dropped off on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m., or at Michael’s on Main and Soul2sole Esthetics.


 

@PhotoJennalism
jenna.hauck@theprogress.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Volunteers load a fridge at Chilliwack Community Cupboard after picking up produce from the Salvation Army. (Jenna Hauck/ The Progress)

Volunteers load a fridge at Chilliwack Community Cupboard after picking up produce from the Salvation Army. (Jenna Hauck/ The Progress)

Doreen Jones says Community Cupboard is looking for a new home. (Jenna Hauck/ The Progress)

Doreen Jones says Community Cupboard is looking for a new home. (Jenna Hauck/ The Progress)

Just Posted

A mallard duck swims through Salish Pond in Chilliwack on Saturday, Jan. 23, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
WEATHER: Snow, rain in forecast for Fraser Valley

Fraser Valley has been treated to more than a week of mostly sunny weather, but it’s about to end

A 75-year-old aircraft has been languishing in a parking lot on the campus of the University of the Fraser Valley, but will soon be moved to the B.C. Aviation Museum. (Paul Henderson/ Chilliwack Progress)
Vintage military aircraft moving from Chilliwack to new home at B.C. Aviation Museum

The challenging move will be documented by Discovery Channel film crews

sd
VIDEO: Mission drag racer scores 1st career win, sets world record, makes history in 2020

Justin Bond, founder and owner of JBS Equipment, hits milestones in break-out year

Cory Silbernagel makes his acceptance speech after receiving the Community Advocate award during the Chilliwack Chamber of Commerce 2020 Chilliwack Champion awards on Friday, Jan. 22, 2021. (YouTube/Chilliwack Chamber of Commerce)
Chilliwack Chamber of Commerce awards recognize businesses, individuals after unprecedented year

‘Positive acts’ honoured during Business Excellence Awards - Chilliwack Champions Edition

A video posted to social media by Chilliwack resident Rob Iezzi shows a teenager getting kicked in the face after being approached by three suspects on Friday, Jan. 22, 2021. (YouTube/Rob i)
VIDEO: Security cameras capture ‘just one more assault’ near Chilliwack secondary

Third high-school related assault Rob Iezzi’s cameras have captured since beginning of 2021

U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders sits in on a COVID-19 briefing with Dr. Bonnie Henry, provincial health officer, and Adrian Dix, B.C. minister of health. (Birinder Narang/Twitter)
PHOTOS: Bernie Sanders visits B.C. landmarks through the magic of photo editing

Residents jump on viral trend of photoshopping U.S. senator into images

Surrey Fire Service responded to a fire in the industrial area of 192nd street and 54th Avenue early Saturday morning (Jan. 23, 2021). (Photo: Shane MacKichan)
Surrey crews respond to fire in industrial area

Fire happened early Saturday morning

FILE - In this Feb. 14, 2017, file photo, Oklahoma State Rep. Justin Humphrey prepares to speak at the State Capitol in Oklahoma City. A mythical, ape-like creature that has captured the imagination of adventurers for decades has now become the target of Rep. Justin Humphrey. Humphrey, a Republican House member has introduced a bill that would create a Bigfoot hunting season, He says issuing a state hunting license and tag could help boost tourism. (Steve Gooch/The Oklahoman via AP, File)
Oklahoma lawmaker proposes ‘Bigfoot’ hunting season

A Republican House member has introduced a bill that would create a Bigfoot hunting season

Economic Development and Official Languages Minister Melanie Joly responds to a question in the House of Commons Monday November 23, 2020 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Federal minister touts need for new B.C. economic development agency

Last December’s federal economic update promised a stimulus package of about $100 billion this year

FILE - In this Nov. 20, 2017, file photo, Larry King attends the 45th International Emmy Awards at the New York Hilton, in New York. Former CNN talk show host King has been hospitalized with COVID-19 for more than a week, the news channel reported Saturday, Jan. 2, 2021. CNN reported the 87-year-old King contracted the coronavirus and was undergoing treatment at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. (Photo by Andy Kropa/Invision/AP, File)
Larry King, broadcasting giant for half-century, dies at 87

King conducted an estimated 50,000 on-air interviews

BC Coroners Service is currently investigating a death at Canoe Cove Marina and Boatyard in North Saanich. (Black Press Media File)
Drowning death in North Saanich likely B.C.’s first in for 2021

Investigation into suspected drowning Monday night continues

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Kimberly Proctor, 18, was murdered in 2010. Her family has spent many of the years since pushing for a law in her honour, that they say would help to prevent similar tragedies. (Courtesy of Jo-Anne Landolt)
Proposed law honouring murdered B.C. teen at a standstill, lacks government support

Ministry of Mental Health and Addictions has concerns with involuntary detainment portion of act

Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam speaks during a daily briefing in Ottawa. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld)
31 cases of COVID-19 variants detected in Canada: Health officials

Dr. Theresa Tam made announces 13 more variant COVID-19 cases in Canada

Most Read