Beverley Elder, executive director of the Saanich Peninsula Lions Food Bank, watches as primary care paramedics Jeff Radvin and Tim Fletcher carry in groceries into the foodbank. Paramedics from across the Saanich Peninsula helped to collect groceries worth at least $9,000 and another $3,000 in cash donations. (Wolf Depner/News Staff)

Saanich Peninsula paramedics stock shelves at Sidney foodbank

Paramedics hauled in some 9,000 in donated groceries and $3,000 in cash

Primary care paramedic Tim Fletcher knows first hand that many people struggle to put food on the table.

“We respond all over the Peninsula, we have seen all walks of life, all different families, and we know there is a need out there, because we have seen the need,” said Fletcher.

It is this spirit of giving back to the community that inspired Fletcher, his colleague Jeff Radvin and paramedics from across the Saanich Peninsula to fill one of their ambulances with at least $9,000 worth of donated groceries and other items for the Saanich Peninsula Lions Food Bank. The campaign also collected some $3,000 in cash.

“We go into so many peoples’ houses, we see the social demographics, so we know that this is good cause,” said Fletcher, as he taps on the outside of the vehicle.

RELATED: Music fundraiser for Peninsula foodbank rocks new record

Radvin said this year’s donation drive was the second of its kind in three years and both agreed that the response of the public could have not been better.

“As it filled up, we were getting giddy,” said Fletcher. “We could notice that the back of the ambulance was actually getting lower and lower. It feels heavy.”

Radvin said driving the ambulance to the food bank felt like driving a football team to their game.

“And how do you feel about having food in back? It is a lot better than having patients in the back,” he added. “That’s for sure,” he said.

The collection drive itself started Friday night in the parking lot of the Thrifty Foods outlet in Central Saanich and lasted 30 hours.

“They were more than happy to allow us into their parking lot and take up parking spaces for the weekend,” said Radvin.

Customers, as well as staff working at the grocery store, went above and beyond expectations in buying groceries, with some also donating cash, said Radvin.

Beverley Elder, the food bank’s executive director, said the donation will make a huge difference in keeping shelves stocked.

“It was a nice surprise,” she said of the donation, which she learned off via social media post on Saturday. “It has been great to get these spontaneous donations.”


Like us on Facebook and follow @wolfgang_depner

wolfgang.depner@peninsulanewsreview.com

Just Posted

Victoria resident catches, cleans pigeon feet to help fight stringfoot

Hair, string tangled around birds’ feet can cut off circulation to toes and whole feet

Cyclists rejoice as the Christmas Lights Parade returns

Family-friendly 10km ride visits big Christmas displays, Dec. 21

Victoria residents advocate for funding for neighbourhoods without community centres

North Park Neighbourhood Association hopes to see $75,000 to bolster nearby staff

Single dad reaches out to Greater Victoria community to help kids celebrate Christmas

A young family was overwhelmed with the warm response from strangers

VIDEO: These are the top toys this Christmas, B.C. toy experts say

Consider the play value of a game, staff at Toy Traders say

Prince George RCMP use bait packages to catch porch pirates over the holidays

First-in-Canada program with Amazon looks to combat parcel theft

Nanaimo mechanical engineer creates thief tracking program

Nanaimo Thief Tracking lets users plot and share information about thefts online

Mayor wants B.C. to institutionalize severely mental ill people who are homeless

Those suffering from mental health conditions, such as schizophrenia, need specialized care, mayor says

Five things of note from Trudeau’s mandate letters to his ministers

Some marching orders come from the Liberal Party’s campaign, while others are new additions

Scheer’s resignation tips party into internal war over school tuition payments

The Conservatives have a Toronto convention already scheduled for April

POLL: Do you have a real or artificial Christmas tree?

The lights are up, holiday shoppers are bustling through the streets and… Continue reading

Navigating ‘fever phobia’: B.C. doctor gives tips on when a sick kid should get to the ER

Any temperature above 38 C is considered a fever, but not all cases warrant a trip to the hospital

Transportation Safety Board finishes work at B.C. plane crash site, investigation continues

Transport Canada provides information bulletin, family of victim releases statement

Most Read