The farmers of the H.E.L.P. growing project (Helping Everyone Live Properly) in southeastern Manitoba went online to auction off cattle, food, services and other items and raised about $48,000 for the Canadian Foodgrains Bank.
“If we can do a little bit to help, that’s a big start,” said Ron Tone, a member of the growing project and one of the organizers of the auction.
This is the second time the H.E.L.P. growing project, which is based in St. Pierre, has hosted an auction at the Grunthal Auction Mart, though this year the auction moved online. Items were sold between April 14 and April 21.
“This year we had 22 livestock, culled cows that were donated by the dairy farmers which worked out to about a thousand bucks apiece,” said Tone.
Grunthal, Steinbach and St. Pierre businesses also donated items like a small shed, picnic tables, soybean seeds, aerial application and food items which went for a combined $18,000.
“Something for everybody,” Tone said. “A big thank you to all the people who have participated in this, whether they were buying stuff or donated things to the H.E.L.P. project.”
Tone said he believes in supporting the Foodgrains Bank because many people die from hunger every day, many of whom are children. The Canadian Foodgrains Bank and its partner organizations provide food aid, nutrition programming and help farmers in areas like east Africa to learn skills that will help them grow more food.
“It’s not only supplying food, but also supplying information, knowledge of how to farm better,” said Tone.
Other groups across Canada have also used auctions to raise money for the Foodgrains Bank. A group in Abbotsford, B.C. recently raised just under $350,000 by auctioning cattle, cheese wheels, fresh blueberries and farm equipment, said Amanda Thorsteinsson, senior communications officer for the Foodgrains Bank.