Hearts are popping up in people’s windows to show support for those battling the pandemic. (Kendra Crighton/News Staff)

Greater Victoria businesses rally for Rapid Relief Fund

Rapid Relief Fund nears the $5-million mark

While businesses are among some of the hardest hit during the pandemic, many are doing what they can to give back to the community.

The Victoria Rapid Relief Fund started with a $1 million goal and quickly surpassed that. Now the fund has almost reached $5 million, with more than $50,000 in donations being matched by Thrifty Foods to help support various organizations throughout the region.

Rasool Rayani, owner of Heart Pharmacy, says the immense support from businesses and individuals within the community is the “silver lining” of the pandemic. Rayani describes how the pharmacy saw a surge in business as the pandemic hit and people stocked up on items but has since seen a steady slow as more people practice social distancing.

READ ALSO: Almost seven million Canadians worked from home in late March

For every transaction, up to $50,000, Heart Pharmacy gave $1 to the Rapid Relief Fund. “We recognized as an essential service we could still be in operation, and this seemed like a great way to support the community,” says Rayani.

Rajiv Gandhi, a partner at Cox Taylor Barristers Solicitors, says that while a number of employees weren’t directly compromised, many of them have relatives who have compromising factors meaning at least two-thirds of the staff are now working from home.

READ ALSO: South Island leaders form task force to address economic crisis amidst COVID-19

“So we’re suffering from that end, at the same time businesses around Victoria have closed … and [when they close] they don’t come to us for help. If they don’t come to us for help we can’t generate revenue,” says Gandhi.

Cox Taylor Barristers Solicitors made a donation of $10,000 to the Rapid Relief Fund.

“From our perspective, everyone in town is reeling from the physical, emotional and social impact of the virus and we know there are people who are in worse shape than us. … It’s not a large contribution but at the end of the day this is our home too,” he says.

Sandra Richardson, CEO of the Victoria Foundation, calls the generosity of businesses in Victoria “overwhelming,” adding that donors are looking for a meaningful way to support the community.

“Many have also said to me how they want to be able to look back on this time and know that they played a part in helping our community weather this storm. Although I have always felt we have some of the most incredible business people in this region, I have to say that I’m so impressed with the way businesses have stepped up,” she says.

To make a donation to the Rapid Relief Fund visit victoriafoundation.bc.ca/rapid-relief-fund.



kendra.crighton@blackpress.ca

Follow us on Instagram
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Coronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

No architect for Langford building ruled ‘unreasonable’ by B.C. Supreme Court

Legal action brought against City in 2019 for permit issued on Hoffman Avenue building

Pauquachin First Nation calls on North Saanich to help restore shellfish in Coles Bay

The nation identifies ‘residential onsite septic systems’ as one of sources of contamination

SEAPARC solidifies plans for Sooke summer camps

Facility set to reopen to the public

Pool deck turns patio as Saanich restaurant cooks up creative outdoor seating options

District supports local businesses such as The Lakes Restaurant in creating seating

Colwood drive-thru window smashed after suspect receives burger without mustard

Wendy’s staff call police after man allegedly rips Plexiglas barrier off window

If Trudeau won’t stand up to Trump, how will regular people: Singh

Trudeau did not directly answer a question about Trump’s actions amid protests

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world in ways that would have… Continue reading

22 new COVID-19 test-positives, one death following days of low case counts in B.C.

Health officials urged British Columbians to ‘stand together while staying apart’

John Horgan says COVID-19 restrictions won’t be eased regionally

B.C. Liberals urge ‘tailored’ response based on infections

Feds get failing grade for lack of action plan on anniversary of MMIWG report

‘Instead of a National Action Plan, we have been left with a Lack-of-Action Plan’

Search and rescue crews help locate 62-year-old Nanoose Bay mountain biker

RCMP: Man got lost on trail and did right thing by calling for assistance

B.C. ranchers, lodge operators say Indigenous land title shuts them out

Tsilhqot’in jurisdiction affects grazing, access to private property

As two B.C. offices see outbreaks, Dr. Henry warns tests don’t replace other measures

Physical distancing, PPE and sanitizing remain key to reduce COVID-19 spread

POLL: Are you sending your children back to school this month?

Classrooms looked decidedly different when students headed back to school for the… Continue reading

Most Read