Some Winnipeggers are stepping up to help seniors and those with compromised immune systems during the coronavirus pandemic.
Sheilah Lee Restall has started Winnipeg One Neighbourhood to help get groceries and supplies to people who are more at risk of becoming seriously ill if they get COVID-19.
Restall has created a Facebook page where volunteers can fill out an online form, while those who need help can sign up to get their groceries or supplies delivered. The plan is to connect them via email, she said.
Restall said she got the idea when thinking about her father, who finished cancer treatments in December, and whose immune system is compromised as a result. She was concerned about how he would get the supplies he needed without putting himself at risk.
“I realized that there are lots of people out there who may not be able to go out or may be very fearful of going out because they’re in the at-risk category,” she said.
“I know Winnipeg overall is such a giving community, and I figured we probably could find volunteers who are more than happy to pick up groceries and drop it off to these people.”
So far, Restall has had 37 people volunteer to go on grocery runs, while two people have reached out to ask for help. She plans to reach out to local grocery stores to help get the word out.
Lexie Sparrow, a nutritionist in her 20s, also has been doing grocery runs for friends and family members with compromised immune systems. She’s extending that offer to others, publishing posts on Instagram and Facebook telling people to contact her if they need help getting supplies.
As a young person in good health, Sparrow felt it was a way she could help out during a difficult time, she said.
“I was just trying to try to find a way that I was able to help people in a situation that feels so out of control for all of us,” she said.
“The one thing that we can control is how we still treat each other and how we support each other.”
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