The Christmas Cheer Board and its thousands of volunteers are working day and night as they prepare to start delivering hampers to Winnipeg families on Dec. 10.
Kai Madsen, the executive director of the Cheer Board, said volunteers have been working since late October and he believes it's those volunteers and their "tireless work" that keep the board running year after year.
"Everyone here is a volunteer and they work long, long hours," said Madsen. "Once we get in the full swing of things, we're working nine to nine, seven days a week and some of them are not youngsters anymore.
"We're chugging right along. We're where we should be but that's not to say we can't always use more, whether it be people fundraising in the community on our behalf or whether it be people coming in to volunteer."
Sheila Worboys, the volunteer co-ordinator at the Cheer Board, said they need more volunteers as next week nears. Wednesday is the first day hampers will be available for pickup.
"We'll have about 600 folks in here picking up hampers next week so we need lots of hands to help with lifting," said Worboys. "We definitely need volunteers for evenings and weekends and need lots of volunteer drivers as well."
Along with the work of volunteers, Worboys said this year they have had a number of local businesses offer their vehicles to help with hamper delivery. She also encourages parents to volunteer with their kids. "It's a warehouse environment here that maybe wouldn't be safe for kids to come in on their own so we really like to see teenage kids come in with their parents and lend a hand."
The board has also teamed up with Canada Safeway for the 60th year to make donating easy. Tuesday's Free Press included a grocery bag you can fill with food and drop off at Safeway stores.
During December, all Safeway stores will also offer $5 and $10 prepackaged food hampers.
For information on how to volunteer or donate to the Christmas Cheer Board visit christmascheerboard.ca .
The number of hampers the Christmas Cheer Board donated to Winnipeg families.
First day Cheer Board hampers will be available for pickup.
First day Cheer Board hampers will be delivered to Winnipeg families.