Baking big for holiday cheer

Volunteers cook up homemade desserts for New Life Mission

Kamloops Daily News
December 5, 2013 01:00 AM

Jennifer Wright and her friends are getting together this Christmas to give back. They will be joining forces to bake for the less fortunate.

Jennifer Wright baked for her family every Christmas, her grandfather in particular.

Later this month, she and 16 friends will hold a one-day baking spree to provide cakes, pies, squares and her grandpa's favourite chocolate chip cookies for the city's less fortunate.

"That was one thing he always wanted for his birthday and for Christmas, chocolate chip cookies," Wright said Wednesday.

Wright had bought all the ingredients for her seasonal baking when her grandfather died in September 2012. With other family members cutting down on the sweets they eat, she decided to bake for charity.

She heard New Life Mission hadn't received fresh baking for its Christmas dinner, so Wright called them up. Much to her delight, they jumped at the chance to serve her homemade desserts with their supper.

Wright decided to bake again this year and was going to do all the work in her small, Victoria Street West kitchen.

When a friend heard about Wright's plans, she offered to help and provide the use of her larger home.

"It went from her helping me to 17 people helping me, either baking at home or helping me bake," she said. "I've had people donate ingredients or donate money for ingredients."

The administration at Kamloops Christian School offered the use of the home economics room for the group on Saturday, Dec. 14. Wright said the room will be perfect for a day of baking.

"I'm asking for cake mixes, brownie mixes. I'm asking family members if they've got anything in their cupboards that are still good," she said, adding she needs flour, sugar, oil and eggs.

"The stuff that you need to bake."

Once everything is baked and cooled, Wright and company will deliver carloads of pies, cakes, loaves, squares and yes, cookies, to New Life Mission, Salvation Army and the United Church Pit Stop program.

New Life Mission outreach manager Terry Butcher said the fresh baking will be a treat for guests at the mission's Christmas Eve dinner.

The mission does receive baking and desserts, but the cakes and pies are usually old. What Wright offers is a whole new thing, he said.

"Well, bless her," said Butcher.

Wright, who works at Walmart, couldn't do this without the support of her friends and family.

"It's quite overwhelming how much help I've had toward this," she said.

The Salvation Army will distribute Wright's baking with its Christmas hampers.

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