Sept. 25, 2020
The pandemic has affected all of us in different ways. Some of us have been fortunate to have maintained a stable income.
Many have not been so lucky, and have faced financial hardship along with all the other uncertainty. Those who work in the service and hospitality industries immediately come to mind. Our community has responded admirably when asked to support our local businesses and others who are struggling.
I’d like to ask you to spare a thought for the local artists, cultural groups, non-profits and service organizations that bring so much to our community. They’ve also been hit hard – their costs have risen, their typical funding sources have been affected, and some are seeing increased demand for their services.
These people and groups strengthen our community in so many ways. They engage and entertain us. They fulfill unmet needs. They support marginalized or under-served populations. They bring us together and improve our quality of life.
Like businesses, many have tried to adapt to the new reality by moving their fundraisers, performances and services online or to physically distant formats. They’re doing what they can, but they all rely on a key ingredient: community support.
If you have resources to share, here are some things you can do:
- Check the websites of local organizations for ways to donate.
- Support any events and fundraisers that are taking place. Buy a ticket, make a donation and help spread the word.
- If you have tickets to an event or show that was cancelled, consider the ticket price a donation and don't ask for a refund.
- Consider becoming a member. For example, I’m not a veteran, but I’ve been a member of the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 263 for more than 20 years.
Some of us have more to give than others, but even small contributions add up.
We’re also doing our part at the City. We’ve reformatted our Kaleidoscope Arts Festival to provide safe live arts and culture experiences in the community from Sept. 25 to Oct. 5 – check our website for details. As well, our COVID-19 Community Support and Recovery Plan has earmarked grants for our cultural partners and support for community and non-profit services and programs.
How Coquitlam comes out of COVID will be determined by how well we work together now to protect those who are vulnerable, and that includes our non-profits.
My hope is that our city will come out of this even stronger, kinder and more united. That’s up to each of us, today.
PS: We’re always interested in hearing about people demonstrating their Coquitlam spirit. Please share your stories on social media and tag #CoquitlamSPIRIT.
Supporting Our Community During the Pandemic
The City of Coquitlam is here to help, with these resources:
- Visit www.coquitlam.ca/csrp to learn about the City’s Community Support and Recovery Plan, which is providing immediate and long-term support for the non-profit sector, businesses and residents;
- Visit www.coquitlam.ca/spirit for a free library of activities for all ages, including fitness, arts and culture, outdoor activities and ways to connect with your community; and
- Visit www.coquitlam.ca/covid19 for updates on City services and initiatives and COVID-19 health resources.
Coquitlam residents and businesses are also encouraged to follow the City of Coquitlam on social media (Facebook, Instagram and Twitter) and download the CoquitlamConnect mobile app for up-to-date City information. Links are available at www.coquitlam.ca/connect.