People left the first annual “Feeding Our Families” event in Cowichan Bay with food in their bellies, smiles on their faces and tears in their eyes.

Ocean View Restaurant Executive Chef Terry Giannakos says Sunday’s event raised about $6,000, including hundreds of pounds of non-perishable food items.

He says the most rewarding part was seeing those less fortunate being able to enjoy a turkey dinner. Giannakos says having the event again is a no-brainer.

The donations raised, along with the 15,000 pounds of food and $7,000 in cash from the Stuff the Truck food drive, will go to the Cowichan Valley Basket Society and other local food banks.