Legion feeling impacts of COVID-19

The impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic is being felt throughout every aspect of our daily lives.

Here in South Delta, one organization has launched a GoFundMe page to try and solicit financial support in order to keep its doors open.

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“Branch 289 in Tsawwassen has come to a point in our history where we need to reach out and ask for help to stay afloat,” said their page. “The overall mission of the Legion has been dedicated to improving the quality of life for Canadian veterans, serving military and RCMP members and their families, as well as seniors, youth and those in our community that need assistance.

If the legion had to close its doors permanent, veterans, seniors, students and others in our community needing help, will have to look elsewhere for assistance.”

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Legion has had to close its doors for a time, as instructed by the province of BC, thereby preventing them from raising funds.

During this time, the rent and utilities still need to be paid. The branch is 100 per cent operated and maintained by volunteers.

“I have a number of letters out to our MP, Carla’s office. We tend to fall through the cracks because we are not a registered not for profit and we don’t have employees, so when you read about how they [the Feds] are supplementing incomes, we won’t qualify for any of this and have to figure out on our own how we will keep these doors open,” said Legion president Bill Belsey. “That’s why we went to the GoFundMe page option as well, we are looking at a possible on-line auction to raise revenue.

“All our money that we raise across the bar, sales of food we can spend accordingly. However, we have close to $75,000 in our bank account and we can’t touch that. That is part of the Poppy Fund and our federal seniors grant has to be used for renovation projects and we also have gaming money, but that is very strict to where we can use that. It is amazing the amount of groups we can support with all this money, but we can’t touch it to keep the doors open.”

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