RICHMOND, British Columbia — London Drugs has launched #Welcoming150, a program and donation drive to support 150 new Canadian families who left their country of origin, including because of unsafe conditions.
The western Canada drug chain said customers can visit their local London Drugs to learn about the families adopted by that store and donate items based on those families’ specific needs of those families. Items collected in the #Welcoming150 program will then be delivered to the participating families before Canada Day on July 1.
“Welcoming and helping newcomers distinguishes what makes Canada great, and so we are very excited to launch and facilitate this support program in all London Drugs stores in June across western Canada,” Clint Mahlman, executive vice president and chief operating officer at London Drugs, said in a statement. “As a proud, family-owned, 72-year-old Canadian company, we will also be contributing corporately, alongside the donations from our customers and staff to ensure each family’s immediate needs are met.”
According to Immigrant Services Society of British Columbia, items needed by refugee families across Canada include hygiene products such as soap, shampoo, deodorant, toothpaste, etc.; kitchen wares such as dishes, cutlery, cooking utensils, small appliances, etc.; linens for the kitchen, bath and bedroom; food including snacks, cooking oil, rice, pasta, flour, cereal, juice, etc.; cleaning supplies including laundry soap, broom, dust pan, iron, etc.; and family needs such as books, games or puzzles.
“We are grateful to London Drugs for offering a program like this to continue to support refugee families primarily from Syria, Iraq, Somalia and Eritrea,” stated Patricia Woroch, chief executive officer of the Immigrant Services Society of British Columbia. “We are still seeing great needs from many of the families we work with across B.C. While it’s encouraging to see many of these people thrive as new residents of Canada, it is important that we don’t forget about those who do need more time to adjust to such a significant change.”
London Drugs noted that the #Welcoming150 initiative also honors the legacy of Tong Louie, who was born in 1914 to an immigrant Chinese family who owned a wholesale food business and in 1945 acquired London Drugs, growing the company to what it is today.
Overall, London Drugs has 78 stores in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba.