Charity Begins At Home: Five Hole For Food Says Hello!


 

Good causes are always a nice story. When I was asked to do a quick story on Five Hole For Food, I jumped immediately because hunger affects so many children and people we often do not know about or sometimes care to know about. It is not an indictment against our consciousness but just an indication of how fast this world can be at times.

This is a cause that is nearing the finish line. The 13 city, 19 day tour started on July 3rd in St. John’s and ends on July 21st in Vancouver. Five Hole For Food raised over 70,000 pounds of food for the hungry since 2010 and this year they are breaking all sorts of records. With the last couple of cities left, it was time to thank this fine crew of people for all they have done while mixing in a sport that so many love.

For those who want to find out a little more about FHFF, there are a few links to get out of the way first. The crew was nice enough to provide us a trailer of what the organization is all about. If people want to follow them on Twitter, all you have to do is follow at @FiveHoleForFood. Please do not forget the hashtag #FHFF. There are still Victoria and Vancouver left on the tour and there are still chances to donate even more food.

The best thing is that when one combines hockey with any good cause, it becomes that much better to follow. It was time to step things up a notch and have a small Q&A with Richard Loat, CEO of Five Hole For Food.

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1. Here is the simplest one. How did Five Hole For Food get started?

I was inspired by the Olympics, seeing the potential that hockey has as a vehicle for social change and wanted to inspire change in not only the community I live in, but also communities across Canada. From there it just snowballed and now we’re embarking on our third tour, visiting 13 cities in 19 days with a goal of raising 100,000 lbs of food from coast-to-coast this summer.

2. Did you ever see FHFF getting this big? What is that one key that made this all possible?

I’ve always envisioned FHFF having a 5th anniversary, 10thanniversary etc., but I never knew how we were going to get there. It’s been incredibly humbling to see it grow so quickly. I have to give credit to all the volunteers that give selflessly to the cause, the organization and, most importantly, the food banks across Canada. They’re the real heroes. I get the glamourous job and get to play hockey across Canada.

3. Is there one particular story that moved you in a way like none other?

There was an instance in Winnipeg where we were playing hockey and a gentleman who relied on the food bank saw our tent and thought we were giving out food. After approaching the food bank representative with his SIN card, he wasn’t turned away empty handed, but rather the representatives gave him a loaf of bread. Seeing the direct, tangible and immediate impact we are making was a very powerful moment for me as my motivation throughout this has always been to evoke a direct and immediate impact. It’s great knowing that we’re playing a role in helping communities directly and quickly.

4. Would there be a chance to expand to the US or work with organizations based in the US?

Wherever there are passionate hockey fans, there can be Five Hole for Food. I’ve thought about it, and can say it’s definitely an option. Like all these things though, you have to walk before you can run.

 

5. What lies ahead for Five Hole For Food?

Five Hole for Food has really taken a life of its own on and, while it feels almost impossible to predict where we may head, it’s exciting to know that we’re going to be raising significantly more food year over year. I can see there being the addition of a few cities, and I’d like to focus on finding a way to make FHFF’s impact year round as hunger certainly isn’t a seasonal issue.

6. Lastly, if there was one thing you would tell people about FHFF, what would it be?

FHFF is constantly growing and we’d love to have anyone who’s keen to get involved to reach out to us. There’s so much potential to channel and inspire people’s passion for hockey into action for the food banks across Canada and we’d love to be a part of that.

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If that was not enough, we were thankful to gain an interview with Steve Dangle Glynn. Steve is famous for all of his work concerning the Toronto Maple Leafs, but he also has worked with Nike Inc. and is now an Associate Producer at CBC among the many endeavors he is working on. Steve was nice enough to take a little time to answer a few questions about his Five Hole For Food experience from Toronto.

1. How did you get involved with Five Hole For Food?

A few years ago I started following Richard Loat on Twitter (mozy19) and heard about this awesome thing he was doing. When I found out there was a Toronto leg I really wanted to help out.

2. We have heard about your videos but the real question is how were your hockey skills for the charitable tourney?

Each year donations have gone up and my hockey skills have gotten worse. I scored one goal in like four hours! I made some decent saves during a brief stint in net. Granted that was after getting scored on a bunch of times.
3. How many pounds of food did Toronto raise for Five Hole For Food?
Unfortunately I don’t know. Richard would. It may not have even been counted yet. The official amount had not even been counted yet.

4. What was the one thing that surprised you most about this year’s event?

I was surprised Five Hole for Food was able to book Dundas Square. The last couple years we had Withrow Park, which actually has a really nice place to play in, but not many people walk by. It’s about raising food and money for food banks, and the exposure of Yonge Dundas Square gives the event huge exposure for that.

5. Who are some of the celebrities that showed up for Five Hole For Food?

There were some CHLers and NHL players if you would consider them celebrities after all.
6. Lastly, what is the goal for next year as far as Toronto?
 

Every year the mission is to raise more and more. The media has actually been very good with getting Five Hole for Food’s message and cause out there, and each year more people step forward and want to contribute.

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Needless to say there will likely be a new record for pounds of food raised this year when all is said and done. Every year, Five Hole For Food gains more and more exposure. Whether you live in Canada or not, there are so many ways to support the site and cause whether you buy some clothing or come out to donate food. The bottom line is hunger affects so many people and the message needs to be relayed to as many people as humanly possible.

Hopefully you can make a difference and thanks again for reading.

Categories CHL