A trio of Osoyoos women brought the idea of a “community cupboard” to Osoyoos Council this morning, hoping to stock it with personal hygiene, stationery and other items for use by low-income families and visitors to the community.
The cupboard would be located somewhere in the downtown core, convenient enough to make it available to passersby but not so convenient that it is routinely depleted.
“There are many locations in the U.S., but there’s only a few in Canada,” explained spokesperson Brenda Dorosz.
“We would like to keep ours more for travelling people and low-income families that might be short until pay day or until they get their monthly cheque that helps them out.”
The cupboard would provide a place for those who have items — or want to otherwise contribute — to drop off small, non-food articles to give away to those might need those items.
“What we’re thinking is more personal hygiene products, and from there doing packs of pens, pencils — families sometimes run short — stickers, paper, envelopes that are pre-stamped — that’s kind of what we were thinking of.”
The cupboard would also be a home for mittens and toques in the colder months and other household items like dish towels and soap.
“People tend to be downtown — for that reason having it in the core area just made more sense,” explained Gaye Horn.
The box would be monitored and caretakered on a daily basis, with food items left overnight delivered instead to the local food bank.
“I like seeing people come up with initiatives like this,” said Counc. Mike Campol, commenting on the project.
“It’s a great idea,” echoed Counc. CJ Rhodes. “Good for you for stepping up and promoting this.”
“I hope that t helps a lot of people in the area,” added Counc. Carol Youngberg. “There’s often people walking around just needing some little thing and they either don’t have the money or don’t know where to go to get it.”
Council directed Town Administration to prepare a report on how it could help make the project a success.
In the meantime, the trio wanted to make sure the community understood this was just an idea and it wasn’t yet ready to take donations.
“We’re not accepting donations at this time,” said Ms. Horn. “We’ll keep you posted.”