Gateway Gazette

Provincial Archives of Alberta Launches Food Drive

The Provincial Archives of Alberta (PAA) is on a mission to collect 150 pounds of food for Edmonton’s Food Bank.

Marjorie Bencz, executive director of the Edmonton Food Bank, Leslie Latta, executive director of the Provincial Archives of Alberta, and Denise Woollard, MLA for Edmonton-Mill Creek.

Beginning this week, Albertans were invited to drop off non-perishable food items when they visit the PAA’s latest free exhibit, 150 Firsts: How Alberta Changed Canada…Forever, which highlights Canadian firsts achieved by Albertans.

This initiative will help benefit the Edmonton Food Bank, which serves more than 20,000 people per month through the hamper program. Approximately 40 per cent of these recipients are children under the age of 18.

The exhibit includes information on various firsts, such as Calgary being the first Canadian city to host a Winter Olympics in 1988 and the construction of Canada’s first UFO landing pad in St. Paul in 1967.

Also featured is the Edmonton Gleaners Association which established the first food bank in Canada in 1981 – now known as the Edmonton Food Bank. The PAA is honouring this first by giving back to the community.

“The Provincial Archives of Alberta is the keeper of our history and shines a bright light on how our province became the Alberta it is today. In addition to inspiring visitors through engaging content such as the new 150 Firsts exhibit, the Archives continues to contribute to our communities through initiatives such as this food drive. Congratulations to staff for their innovative idea to support the community as we continue to celebrate the PAA’s 50th anniversary. Well done!”

Ricardo Miranda, Minister of Culture and Tourism

The 150 Firsts exhibit is a key project in the PAA’s recognition of Canada’s 150th anniversary of Confederation.

“Edmonton’s Food Bank is proud to be featured as one of the firsts in the 150 Firsts: How Alberta Changed Canada…Forever exhibit at the Provincial Archives of Alberta. We are excited to partner with the Archives on the ‘150 for 150’ food bank initiative, and hope that visitors to the PAA donate non-perishable items to assist us in providing food to those in need.”

Marjorie Bencz, executive director, the Edmonton Food Bank

PAA celebrates 50 years of operation

Established in 1967 during Canada’s centennial year, the PAA has been home to Alberta’s documentary history and open to the public for the past 50 years.

Various 50th anniversary celebrations are taking place throughout 2017.

The Edmonton Food Bank works collaboratively with more than 230 organizations and coordinates more than 2,000 events each year to raise food and funds to support their mission.


The Provincial Archives of Alberta is a provincially owned facility in Edmonton that acquires, preserves and publicly makes available important historical records from government, individuals and organizations for researchers of all ages.

The PAA collection includes:

  • 53,700 metres of government textual records
  • 4,540 metres of private textual records
  • 154,330 maps, plans and drawings
  • 1,845,935 photographs
  • 71,835 audiovisual holdings, including film, video and audio recordings
  • 14,825 resource library books

Along with storing valuable historic records, the PAA’s expert staff clean, repair and provide special storage for records that have deteriorated over the years and require unique preservation.

Find out how you can donate records to the PAA or how to preserve personal records at home.

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