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RCRG designated COVID-19 response agency for seniors

By Don Fennell

Published 11:14 PDT, Tue March 31, 2020

Last Updated: 11:15 PDT, Tue March 31, 2020

In these uncertain times, Richmond Cares, Richmond Gives (RCRG) is stepping up even more.

The community’s hub for volunteering and giving, RCRG has been designated one of 24 agencies across the province to be a COVID-19 response centre for seniors.

This means providing additional services, while continuing to upgrade existing services, according to RCRG president and CEO Ed Gavsie.

“It’s all part of the 2-1-1 plan,” he explains, noting the provincial government recently directed $50 million to United Way to oversee the new Safe Senior, Strong Community Program.

A good portion of that funding is to help address at-home services for seniors as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. 

Ensuring physical distancing doesn’t lead to social isolation is one of the key challenges during the crisis—particularly for seniors. Seniors, especially those living alone, may find during this time a disconnection from family and friends.

With the assistance of United Way of the Lower Mainland, any senior aged 65 or over can call 2-1-1 or complete a short online form at, to be connected to a range of local volunteer services. These include grocery shopping and delivery, prepared meal delivery and prescription pickup and delivery. While clients will still pay for their own groceries and meals, the services themselves are free, Gavsie says.

The program will remain in place through the crisis.

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