A group of Revelstokians are rallying together to help the most vulnerable in the city during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Lisa Cyr, coordinator for Revelstoke Community Response Network, is trying to organize a network designed to help those who need it.
The goal of the Revelstoke Community Response Network is to link together various local community members, agencies, governments and businesses. The aim of the network is to end adult abuse and neglect. Or in the case of a pandemic, helps those that cannot go outside by getting them groceries and dog walking.
Cyr said before the coronavirus pandemic, there was already a need to help the vulnerable in Revelstoke, such as seniors and the disabled. COVID-19 is just helping spur that network into a reality.
Earlier this winter, Revelstoke local Sandra Gregory started the Facebook group Revelstoke Unstuck, designed to connect volunteers to others in the community that need help, such as shovelling their driveways.
Cyr said that group inspired her to create a coordinated community response that would includes Revelstoke agencies, such as paramedics and the food bank.
“We want everyone to thrive. No one should be forgotten,” she said.
The problem with trying to reach the most vulnerable in Revelstoke said Cyr is they are not necessarily on Facebook. She continued a coordinated community response would help reach those offline. By working with local agencies, such as parademics, Cyr said the organization will know who in Revelstoke needs help the most.
Two days ago, Cyr posted on Facebook looking for volunteers. She said in less than 24 hours almost 40 people offered to help.
“It’s really beautiful to see the community come together,” said Cyr.
“It’s moments like this that can bring out the best in people.”
Kat Cadegan said she reached out to Cyr because with the coronavirus crisis, people are focusing so much on themselves and what they individually need.
“I’m worried about the people living in the margins that are barely making it work as is,” she said.
“I think everyone needs to take a moment to pause and ask themselves – how can I help and who can I help?”
She continued that people can use the COVID-19 crisis to come together and not hoard supplies. Cadegan is a jeweller in Revelstoke and currently donating 35 per cent of her sales to a charity of the buyer’s choice.
Cyr said people have already reached out for help to the Revelstoke Community Response Network, such as needing food delivered.
When the COVID-19 crisis ends, Cyr hopes the Revelstoke Community Response Network will remain and continue providing guidance.
“It can be hard at times to ask for help and it takes courage to reach out. But it’s important to know there are many people in Revelstoke more than willing to help you,” said Cyr.
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