April 10, 2020 – London Drugs is expanding its community support program launched a few weeks ago, to continue to help more seniors and vulnerable individuals who are self-isolating. Starting in the Lower Mainland and Fraser Valley with potential expansion to more areas, a new collaboration with United Way connects ready and willing volunteers with vulnerable people right in their own neighbourhood – offering to help with food delivery, home maintenance work and other assistance during COVID-19.
“Since launching our Seniors Support Program a few weeks ago, we have helped hundreds of seniors with a variety of requests from sourcing important products to making special direct deliveries quickly, to their homes,” said Clint Mahlman, London Drugs president and chief operating officer. “Supporting United Way’s “local love in a Global Crisis” is a natural extension of the community outreach our support team has been providing. We need to help as many people as possible during this time of crisis and we need to get the word out to the most vulnerable in our communities that help IS available.”
When customers are shopping at London Drugs in the Lower Mainland and Fraser Valley for their essential items, they will now see United Way “local love in a Global Crisis” postcards which they can pick up and drop off to their neighbours’ mailboxes and front doors. The postcards indicate help is available and provides the contact information for a United Way community engagement specialist in their neighbourhood.
Individuals in the Lower Mainland and Fraser Valley in need of assistance can also fill out United Way’s online form. The pre-screened volunteers are ready to help with grocery or prescription deliveries, a referral for financial assistance, assistance with technology, or even social connection via a friendly phone call.
“We’ve had an overwhelming number of volunteers come forward through this crisis,” said Kim Winchell, Director, Social Impact, United Way of the Lower Mainland. “So many people are looking for ways to counteract their feelings of stress and restlessness by helping out. It’s really been incredible to see neighbours helping neighbours. In many cases, they are making life-saving connections in the communities where they live.”
“The physical distancing required to prevent the spread of COVID-19 changes how we can offer support, but we continue to find new and caring ways to take care of people every day,” said Mahlman. “A simple act of local love can go a long way to ensure that everyone in our communities gets the help they need during these challenging times.”
London Drugs will also be accepting at till donations for the United Way in all 82 stores and online at LondonDrugs.com. Funds raised will go directly to United Way initiatives supporting those most affected by COVID-19.
United Way’s “local love in a Global Crisis” supports five key areas:
- Basic needs: Ensuring people have access to basic essentials such as food, personal hygiene products, etc.
- Help to seniors: Ensuring vulnerable people who are isolated, are also supported.
- Capacity for community services: Ensure that community partners can continue to do their vital local work.
- Mental health support: Enable crisis lines and system navigation services.
- Support for volunteers: Ensuring volunteers receive the support they need to carry out their acts of local love.
A reminder seniors outside of the Lower Mainland and Fraser Valley who are self-isolating and need assistance with basic necessitates or medications can email SeniorsSupport@LondonDrugs.com. London Drugs’ seniors support team is available around the clock to help. Caregivers, family members and neighbours can also email on behalf of someone they know who is in need.