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London student task force delivers groceries to those in self-isolation during coronavirus outbreak

The London Volunteer Task Force delivers groceries to the doorsteps of people who are in self-isolation due to the COVID-19 pandemic. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette

A group of Western University students has launched a delivery task force in an effort to help those in self-isolation amid the novel coronavirus pandemic.

The London Volunteer Task Force was created to deliver groceries to people in self-isolation and those who don’t feel comfortable going out to the stores.

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“We’re providing a drop-off, non-contact service that mitigates some of the risks for those who can’t go to the grocery store themselves where we deliver groceries to their homes,” said Max Soltysiak, organizer of the task force.

The fourth-year biology student got the idea of delivering groceries to the London community after coming across a tweet online.

“I read a tweet about how an individual helped an elderly couple in a grocery store parking lot who were frightened to go into the grocery store,” said Soltysiak.

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“I, along with another group of students, just wanted to help make sure that those who can’t or are afraid to go to the grocery store don’t have to.”

Right from the beginning, Soltysiak says the student initiative to volunteer in the task force and help out the London community was outstanding.

“It’s very conducive, very positive. Everyone was looking to help out as much as possible. It’s quite warming to see that people aren’t letting too much get them down and people are really rallying around helping their own community,” Soltysiak said.

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Soltysiak told Global News that some deliveries have already been made since the launch of the task force.

“We have [made deliveries], and it’s gone over pretty smoothly so we’re pretty happy with how our protocols currently work. It is still a fluid process so if the need comes, we can adjust what we’re doing, but for now, it seems to be running smoothly as the first requests are coming in.”

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Making a grocery request is a simple task. Anyone can head to the task force website at londonvtf.ca and fill out a grocery request form for items up to an amount of $100. The task force is asking funds be sent via e-transfer to the volunteer who purchases the items.

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