A group of young volunteers delivered the group's flyers on Monday, March 17, to hundreds of houses in Milton. (L-R) Sahara Beckwith-Cooper, Linkon Beckwith, Emma Medeiros and Ethan Barnes. - Kristen Barnes photo
Amid the novel coronavirus pandemic, a Milton group is making it easier for local seniors and those most at risk to access groceries.
The “Milton COVID Assistance” group on Facebook, set up by a number of residents, connects those in need with community volunteers. In just a couple of days, the group has garnered more than 1,800 members — mostly comprised of residents throughout the town.
“The response has been overwhelming,” said Craig Thomson, one of the group moderators and initiators. “These are people that are willing to help — and take the precautions that are needed to deliver the goods.”
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As listed on their page, volunteers have to ensure that they’re healthy and free of any cold or flu symptoms. They are also expected to take safety measures to minimize handling of the groceries.
Those who need assistance are encouraged to join the group, where they can request help.
“Our volunteers will step up and take care of them,” the freelance graphic designer said, adding that they have made a number of deliveries.
“It's not just for the elderly or seniors, but also immunocompromised people, with weakened immune systems, that shouldn't be going out there, especially at this time.”
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Beyond delivering supplies, they also offer a ride service for seniors and other vulnerable individuals who have to go to important doctor’s appointments but want to avoid taking public transit.
“We do have volunteers and protocols in place to sanitize a spot in the vehicle and protect those vulnerable people,” he said.
Volunteers have also been handing out and dropping flyers with information about the group and their phone number: 416-840-4637.
“A lot of seniors aren’t tech savvy and likely aren’t on Facebook. They’re welcome to call this number,” he said, adding that a representative will take down the information and post it on the Facebook page so that a volunteer can respond.
And there won’t be a shortage of good Samaritans in Milton.
“The town is pretty much covered by a lot of very generous people,” he said, calling for the community to "stay safe, stay sanitized."