Police Chief Bryan Larkin issues #BackpackChallenge to Waterloo region emergency service members

Chief Bryan Larkin encourages people to lend a hand.
Chief Bryan Larkin encourages people to lend a hand. Waterloo police handout

Waterloo Police Chief Bryan Larkin threw down the gauntlet on Monday, challenging all emergency service members with his #BackpackChallenge.

The chief posted a video on his Twitter page encouraging all emergency service workers throughout the region to purchase and donate backpacks, lunchbags or gift cards to Waterloo Family & Children’s Services (FCS) for kids going back to school.

A year ago, the FCS gave out around 600 backpacks to children in the Waterloo region, and Larkin believes with the help of first responders across the region, a growing need can be met.

“We know the need is even greater this year so we thought we would encourage all emergency services.,” he said. “Across the region we probably have 2000 emergency service workers so if everybody contributed we can obviously make a significant difference.”

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While Larkin laid down the challenge to emergency service workers, he also hopes that the general public will take an opportunity to help as well.

“We’re in sort of a downtime of giving in the community in the sense that it is the summer holidays and everybody is sort of taking it easy,” Larkin told Global News. “It’s a good way to get ready for the school year and make a small difference.”

If the general public wish to lend a hand, donations can be dropped off at police headquarters, located at 200 Maple Grove Road in Cambridge, or at any of the following locations:

  • North Division, 45 Columbia Street East, Waterloo
  • Central Division, 134 Frederick Street, Kitchener
  • South Division, 176 Hespeler Road, Cambridge
  • Rural Division, 13 Industrial Drive, Elmira
  • The Family Centre, 65 Hanson Avenue, Kitchener
  • Family & Children’s Services, 168 Hespeler Road, Cambridge
  • Staples, 245 Strasburg Road, Kitchener