Calgary bakery breaks bread with community during COVID-19 pandemic

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A family bakery in Alberta helps the community.

European Bakery in Calgary delivered loaves of bread to seniors and other needy people throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, and hundreds were delivered to the door free of charge since mid- March.

“We make 60 loaves of bread per delivery, we’ve made it three or four times so far,” said owner Shaqir Duraj.

Originally from Kosovo, Duraj and his family were among the millions who fled the country during the 1999 war. Landed in Canada, he moved to Calgary, opening his bakery on popular 17th Avenue in 2006.

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“How could I not do this?” Said Duraj. “When I arrived in this country, I realized that there was something I could really do.”

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Duraj’s bakery, like many other small businesses in Alberta, has been hit hard by the pandemic, having lost significant business, including hotels and other restaurants to which it is directed. While many companies have had to lay off staff and cut costs, Duraj keeps as many employees as possible and is always looking for more volunteers to help it move its initiative forward.

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“A teacher, she came and said” Hey, I’m here and I want to help. Can I have breads delivered to these addresses? Said Duraj.

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The pandemic will end at some point and measures to prevent the spread of the virus will be lifted. When that time comes and the company starts to open again, Duraj has only one wish.

“A thank you to stop would suffice. Support local businesses. If we support the locals, we would be really in better shape. “



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