WINDSOR, ONT. -- The Windsor Goodfellows Club has begun handing out its first food boxes collected as part of the June 27th Miracle food drive in the region.

On Saturday, a drive-thru food bank was created to hand out the boxes made up of cereal, mac-and-cheese, canned goods and other items to those in need.

"Been a lot of traffic, a lot of drive-up traffic but, a lot of just walk-up traffic too," said Brian Beaumont, the warehouse manager at Goodfellows.

Beaumont says The Goodfellows’ share of the 2-million pounds of food collected as part of the one-day Windsor-Essex food drive saw 85 pallets, or three tractor trailers’ worth, of food delivered two weeks ago.

A reduced number of volunteers, to comply with COVID-19-related public health restrictions, worked to get the food boxes together and out the door.

"This means, you know, I’m not obligated to go to the grocery store, maybe even get infected, who knows right?" said Tim Lasky after picking up a box.

Volunteers helped pack and hand out boxes for much of the morning before wrapping up at noon.

Hundreds of boxes were handed out from 9:00 a.m to 12:00 p.m. including to Dave Dorey.

"This is the first time I ever knew about it and it’s good that The Goodfellows are here to help everybody out," said Dorey, who used the drive-thru option to collect a box.

According to Beaumont, The Goodfellows Food Bank sees about 120 food packages handed out a day typically but, demand has been greater so far this year.

While Beaumont says volunteers are happy to help, it’s hard to see how many young and old are in need.

"Definitely, our numbers are up from what we normally do like this time last year," said Beaumont. "We’re definitely giving out a lot more this year than we normally do."

The giveaway on Saturday wasn’t able to move out all of the donated food with hundreds of prepared boxes remaining at the downtown Windsor warehouse.

Beaumont says another special giveaway will likely be organized to help return the community donations collected in the summer to those in need this fall.

Brian Beaumont
Brian Beaumont, warehouse manager at The Windsor Goodfellows Club, loads cars with food boxes outside of the group’s downtown Windsor location on Saturday, October 17, 2020. (Ricardo Veneza/CTV Windsor)

"The city of Windsor has always been known for [its] generosity and it’s great that we’re able to act as an avenue to help get that food that was donated and all the hard work that was put into the [June 27th Miracle] food drive to be able to get that and get it back out to the public where it’s really needed," said Beaumont.

The Goodfellows food bank is open on Tuesdays and Fridays from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. and 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.