A group of about 60 volunteers, including Blue Mountains, Ont., town staff and councillors, are working to deliver groceries from local supermarkets to those in need.
“Our population is quite old — I think our average age is 57,” Blue Mountains Mayor Alar Soever told Global News.
“We have a lot of seniors and people who may be slightly health-compromised and having them go out grocery shopping, if there is exposure in the store, it wouldn’t be very good.”
Those in need can place their grocery orders with the Thornbury Foodland and Goldsmith’s Orchard Market. The stores will then box up the orders, which will be delivered by the volunteers.
“The other thing volunteers are doing is wiping down the shopping carts at the Foodland,” Soever said.
The initiative was spearheaded by the Thornbury-Clarksburg Rotary Club about a week ago.
“We have a large number of volunteers, but we’re looking for more,” said John White, the primary organizer of the initiative and a member of the local rotary club.
“We’re doing the Thornbury Foodland, which is the biggest grocery store — it’s the only main grocery store in this area.”
So far, Blue Mountains hasn’t seen a huge spread of COVID-19, according to Soever.
“We don’t know of any cases, but of course, the testing has been minimal, and a lot of people may be asymptomatic and have it and not know it,” Soever said.
“I urge all people to take all the necessary precautions and hopefully we can get through this without any real serious spread here.”
The local mayor told Global News that over half the town’s residents are seasonal.
“Normally this time of year, they’re not here, but certainly from observing my neighbourhood and other neighbourhoods, most of them are now here because they would rather ride out this crisis up here than in Toronto or the GTA,” Soever said.
“I’m happy that our community is pulling together to put this effort forward.”
As of Thursday, Ontario reported 837 active cases of the novel coronavirus.