This story has been contributed by Richmond Parol Leader / Co-founder Marty Price:
When we went into Lockdown, I noticed on Facebook that a community group called “Kai with Love” were struggling to get food parcels to our community in need. I contacted our committee and put a proposal to them that we help out. Obviously, this would be done under strict guidelines and in line with COVID-19 rules.
The committee agreed, so, then I contacted the local coordinator Abigail Packer who is the founder & works for the Richmond Group run out of Richmond Community Church.
They were ever so grateful to have our help. I reached out to our Patrol and received 11 Patrollers that wanted to assist but have only used up to 8 to keep it regular.
I started myself doing some deliveries after work and on the weekends, but then operations grew, and I needed help from our volunteers.
From Wednesday, 25th August, our Richmond Patrol had 1 Patroller in Richmond to assist with Traffic Management and putting parcels in residents’ car boots; there was no contact allowed. This was also done in Stoke with another Patroller. In Tahunanui, I had a couple (husband & wife) who recently joined our last intake and they delivered parcels in our patrol car and trailer.
It was a massive day for our team, with 1100 Food Parcels delivered to our residents in need. I joined the team after work and delivered a few extras that were needed.
I started on Saturday 21st August, and we’ve now had teams of Patrollers assist each week. I felt that it was necessary to continue to also promote who we are, so all Patrollers had to turn up in Hi-Viz and uniform.
We have had a tremendous response from the community for assisting and were also recently featured in the local paper. It’s not about highlighting us but I just felt we have such a great resource and as we could not patrol, we could still help in other ways for which we are now doing.
It has also opened the eyes of some of our Patrollers to the needs in our community. We are still helping each week, mostly now only in Richmond but still available in nearby towns if and when needed. I have also just recently reached out to Nelson & Motueka Community Patrols asking for their assistance if we need it as we move forward, and they are keen to assist if they can.
I do want to thank my team for all they have done so far in our area, they have given up their time once again to assist our community in other ways.
Thank you, Marty Price, Team Leader RDCP.
Patrollers that assisted me: Cathy & Tim Hodgson (Couple), Steve MacDonald, Mike Gill, Glenn Bowden, George Stone, Richard Simmons.