Cowichan's Bread Van needs dough

Berks Intertruck service manager Terry Taylor shows off the Bread Van
Berks Intertruck service manager Terry Taylor shows off the Bread Van's newly rebuilt engine, for which Charles Lukas, left, and the rest of the folks at Cowichan Food Connection hope the community can chip in.
— image credit: Krista Siefken

Cowichan's Bread Van has plenty of bread, but what it needs now is dough — and not the kind made with flour.

The star of the Cowichan Food Connection fleet has been out of commission for more than a month, requiring a total engine rebuild.

Bread Van founder Charles Lukas says even with a charitable discount from Berks Intertruck, the price tag for a rebuild on the three-tonne truck is about $6,000.

The star of the CFC fleet has been out of commission for more than a month, which means Lukas has been making his loaf deliveries in a less flashy — and less functional — one-tonne truck.

It's got less room, which means doubling and tripling up on deliveries, plus runs on gas instead of diesel, meaning soaring gas prices aren't helping matters.

And without a power tail-lift, Lukas and the rest of the volunteer crew is having a hard time picking up the bread-racks left behind at delivery sites such as schools, community groups and churches.

"We've had to cut some corners, like instead of weekly deliveries, we're doing some every other week," he said.

"But we're keeping it going. The need is even greater these days."

OK Tire owner Harold Nikirk has donated $1,000 toward the repairs, though, and has issued a challenge to other local businesses to follow suit.

Anyone interested in assisting the Bread Van, which delivers free bread to a variety of Cowichanians in need — particularly school children — can contact Cowichan Food Connection co-chair Joyce Behnsen at 250-715-6044.

The Bread Van service is also looking for new volunteers who can assist with deliveries, office work and/or fundraising.






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