In June, we posted a story about a group of VPD members from the Finance Department who reached out to the Vancouver Police Foundation in order to help seniors living on their own. With so many people in isolation and seniors at a greater risk than most, the VPF agreed to support this important initiative.
With our commitment, Davina Chung and her colleagues turned to S.U.C.C.E.S.S. to identify individuals who may need the support. Through June and July, they reached out to different retailers and sourced/bought what they needed for the hampers, including basic groceries, toiletries and supplies. The team volunteered several hours making all the packages, including a handwritten note on every bag wishing the recipient well.
“As a group, we are always looking for ways to give back to the community,” says Davina. “Seniors who live independently are often forgotten. They have access to very limited resources. Many are also challenged to navigate and access technology, financial assistance, as well as mental health and wellness programs.”
The motivation for this project came from the fact that the coronavirus pandemic has caused even the most functional, thriving members of society to become overwhelmed and anxious – feelings which are experienced exponentially by seniors who are living on their own.
Working together to achieve this common charitable goal has not only brought the VPD Finance staff closer together, but it also has increased their own mental well-being and happiness in the process. There is a Chinese proverb that Davina and her team stand behind: If you want happiness for an hour, take a nap. If you want happiness for a day, go fishing. If you want happiness for a year, inherit a fortune. If you want happiness for a lifetime, help somebody.
On July 26, the VPD Finance Team, VPD Inspector Terry Hung and VPF Executive Director met with CEO Queenie Choo, Ahmed Omran and other members of S.U.C.C.E.S.S. to hand out the hampers. We met a number of the residents at Solheim Place, all of whom seemed most grateful for their bags.
Since then, we have worked with London Drugs and the Tong & Geraldine Louie Foundation to source goods for the winter packages Davina and her team have planned, as well as products for a few other programs that will distribute flight kits and other packages to those in need, such as victims fleeing domestic violence.
For now, over 50 seniors living in Vancouver know that they have not been forgotten and that many people care.
Thank you to Vancouver Police Foundation and the donors for their generous donation to make this initiative a reality.” – Davina Chung.