BGOLDN's shelves will look a little fuller this month, thanks to Golden High School's annual food drive.
The boys basketball team and the larger school community collected almost 2,500 items, totaling 860 pounds of food worth $1,420, organizers announced Feb. 17.
The annual food drive honors Jamie Wiggins, a Jefferson County teacher and GHS basketball parent who died in 2018.
All items will be donated to BGOLDN, formerly known as the Golden backpack program, which supports local children and families experiencing food insecurity. The items include school-day snacks for Golden students and meals for their families.
Kevin Andrezejewski, BGOLDN's executive director, said the items are much-needed right now, because of an increasing number of households using BGOLDN. The 2,500 donated items will likely last one or two weeks, he estimated.
"This time of year we see a decrease in donated food items, which we have to supplement by purchasing food from Food Bank of the Rockies and other sources," he stated via email. "We are very grateful to the GHS basketball team and the families which supported these efforts."
The Demons had hoped to collect 3,000 items for the 2023 Jamie Wiggins Food Drive, but Mother Nature paused their momentum.
The final day of the food drive was scheduled for Jan. 18, at the home basketball game versus rival Wheat Ridge High School. However, the Jan. 17-18 snowstorm forced the Demons to reschedule to Feb. 6, and game-day donations were less than organizers had hoped.
Still, attendees donated 50 items and $100 cash, which helped the organizers purchase more snack items for BGOLDN.
Terre Deegan-Young and other organizers thanked everyone who helped make this year's food drive a success. They believed the annual food drive is a powerful way to honor Wiggins' memory, and look to continue the tradition next year.