Langley mom Michele Damjanovic, seen here with son Dylan, is looking for volunteers to help shop for seniors during the coronavirus outbreak. (special to Langley Advance Times)

Volunteers wanted to shop for seniors during virus outbreak

Langley mom is looking for helpers

A Langley mom is hoping to help seniors get through the COVID-19 virus outbreak by having volunteers do their shopping.

Willoughby resident Michele Damjanovic put the word out on social media Friday, and said the response has been encouraging.

“There’s quite a lot of people coming forward,” Damjanovic told the Langley Advance Times.

“Canadians are so generous.”

Anyone interested in helping can contact her by email at micheledamjanovic@gmail.com.

READ ALSO: VIDEO: Langley seniors centre takes precautions to prevent spread of virus

Damjanovic has previous experience with volunteer-based groups, having set up a mother/baby group called Acorns and Oaks.

She said details are still being worked out, but the goal is to have a free service where trustworthy volunteers do the shopping for seniors, who would only pay for their purchases, not the service.

“I’m from the UK and I don’t have any family here,” she observed.

“I’d hope someone would do that for my mum and grandma.”

She was moved to act in part by social media images showing seniors confronted by empty shelves, unable to keep up with the swarms of shoppers loading up on toilet paper, bottled water and hand sanitizers.

“It just breaks my heart,” Damjanovic commented.

People over 60 years and those with underlying medical conditions, such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, chronic respiratory disease, and cancer are most at risk of developing complications from C0VID-19.

READ MORE: Connect with your elderly neighbours during COVID-19 crisis

BC Seniors Advocate Isobel Mackenzie has issued a call for neighbours of seniors to “reach out to the seniors we know around us and see what extra help they might need right now.”

“The impact of COVID-19 could mean that their care worker is under the weather and can’t provide help. It could mean that their adult children who would normally help them, aren’t feeling well and can’t help them. It may mean that they really shouldn’t be in crowded situations… somebody else could go do their grocery shopping for them.”

Mackenzie recommends exchanging phone numbers with your neighbours (if you don’t already have them) and keeping in contact with each other via phone or text.



dan.ferguson@langleyadvancetimes.com

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