With bleak news being spread on our televisions, social media, and media outlets, it can be difficult to acknowledge the positive outcomes of the pandemic. This past year, although testing and difficult, the Lotus Light Charity Society (LLCS) was able to bring about significant change to Vancouver communities, especially through the help of community members, corporate partners, and generous donors. In 2020 and 2021 alone, Lotus Light created the Covid-19 Community Care Drive, and with the help of the Vancouver community, the LLCS was able to create numerous initiatives across metro-Vancouver to help vulnerable populations who were disproportionately impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic. The key initiatives are highlighted below:
- The Covid-19 Community Caring Drive (April 2020-): To provide much needed assistance, the LLCS launched this program in April 2020. Partnering with numerous community service organizations, including B.C paramedics, immigrant service groups, and food distribution hubs across the Lower Mainland, LLCS volunteers have delivered and distributed 340,000+ pounds of much needed food to 10,000+ families and community members particularly affected by the pandemic.
- Sanitizer, Mask, and PPE Drive (July 2020-): In times where Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) was highly demanded, the LLCs worked with partner organizations to donate 50,000+ PPE items, 45,000+ masks, including 15,000+ masks hand-sewn by LLCS volunteers, and 250,000+ pounds of hand sanitizer to hospital workers, community policing centers, charities, and vulnerable low-income residents in need.
- Hamper Program for Inner-City Schools (July 2020-): Since July 2020, LLCS volunteers have donated 1400+ hampers filled with fresh produce, fruit, non-perishable food items, breakfast items, personal hygiene items, soaps, detergents, and stationary to help students from low income families.
- Food Recovery Hamper Program (May 2020-): Since May 2020, the LLCS has collaborated with local food recovery networks, food producers, and distributors to deliver 10,000+ pounds of much needed food to inner-city children, various Indigenous groups, single mothers, community kitchens serving the homeless, and to low-income families and seniors living in social housing. The organization was also able to support the Strathcona Emergency Food Hub through this initiative, which helped provide some food security to all vulnerable people located in the V6A postal code, most of which encompasses Vancouver’s Downtown East-Side (DTES) neighbourhood.
- Covid-19 Emergency Soup Kitchen (July 2020-): From July 2020 to April 2021, the LLCS prepared 10,000+ free and hot meals for camped homeless living in the DTES, and since May 2021, the LLCS has been shifting its attention to preparing free and hot meals to low-income seniors living in social housing around the DTES area. On notable holidays such as Christmas and Chinese New Year, LLCS volunteers continued to prepare and deliver specially made feasts to families in need and to homeless populations across metro-Vancouver.
While vaccines are being increasingly distributed in Vancouver and life slowly returns to normal for many, the impacts of the pandemic will continue to linger, and many populations still remain vulnerable. To keep the momentum going, the LLCS will continue to work with generous donors, community members, and volunteers to give back to the Vancouver community in need, and together, we hope to overcome the adversities created by the pandemic and help create a more equitable society.
The LLCS would like to sincerely thank all financial sponsors, corporate sponsors, community partners, and all our volunteers for your continuous and generous support. For more information, see: http://vllcs.org/en/annual-sponsor-wall/. If you would like to support this program, through monetary donations or volunteering, please visit: http://vllcs.org/en/donation/support-lotus-light-charity-society-covid-19-community-caring-drive/
You could directly donation to the Covid-19 program here via PayPal or Credit Card