Christmas Cheer Board using food vouchers as alternative to hampers this holiday season

The Christmas Cheer Board of Winnipeg will be distributing food vouchers instead of its traditional hampers this holiday season due to concerns over COVID-19. 

It was a difficult decision, but a necessary one during the pandemic, said Kai Madsen, Executive Director of the Christmas Cheer Board. 

“With physical distancing concerns, as well as the risk to several thousand volunteers that help put all this together, we felt that food vouchers would get much needed support into the hands of people who need us while reducing potential COVID-19 transmission risks,” he said in a news release. 

The cheer board’s sponsored hamper program, Feed-A-Family, will still continue this year however. The program connects community groups, businesses, churches and individuals with a hamper family leading up to the holidays. 

Support from the community will be vital this year given the challenges many families face due to the pandemic, Madsen said. 

“This year has been a challenge for so many. We recognize things may not be the same for our supporters as they have been in the past and want people to know that we are still here and we will continue to help those who need us,” Madsen said. 

More information on how the vouchers will work will be made available in the coming weeks, the cheer board says. 

Applications for the Christmas Cheer Board programs will be open from Nov. 12 to Dec. 13. 

Financial donations can be made online on the Christmas Cheer Board’s website.

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