Life is a struggle for families where poverty is an issue, doubly so at a time of pandemic.
There is a cost to living decently and with dignity, one that local Rotary clubs have banded together to address with their 2020 Day of Action.
Through the month of September, the Rotary clubs of Simcoe, Delhi and Norfolk Sunrise have encouraged local shoppers to purchase and donate expensive, in-demand hygiene products such as tampons, sanitary napkins, panty liners, and incontinence and bladder products.
Also on the wish-list are tooth paste, toothbrushes, diapers for all age groups, baby wipes, and other personal care items such as shaving cream, razors and deodorant.
This year’s Day of Action was inspired by a similar Rotary campaign in the past that was called Tampon Tuesday. That idea, as well, was to get useful, necessary hygiene products into the hands of everyone who needs them regardless of income level.
“Rotarians are people of action,” said Lisa Bishop, a past president of the Delhi Rotary Club and a District 7090 Governor nominee.
“Women need hygiene products which can be expensive, especially at this time of COVID-19 when there are financial hardships.
“We also need diapers for all ages and urinary and incontinence products, again for the cost these can impose on a family. Norfolk has been very responsive. It’s a caring, compassionate community.”
Bishop said an elaboration of Tampon Tuesday county-wide fits the times, given the pandemic need for social distancing and performing good deeds with minimal interaction.
The deadline for making contributions is Oct. 2. Drop-off locations in Simcoe include Sobeys, Roulston’s downtown and the Roulston’s Wellness Centre on Donly Drive North.
Staff at Norfolk General Hospital can donate items at NGH. In Port Dover, drop-off locations include Roulston’s on Main Street, Dover Apothecary, Willaert Pharmacy and the No Frills grocery store.
Other drop-off locations include Roulston’s in Delhi, the Magic Mart in Waterford, and Pharmasave in Port Rowan. Donations of cash are also welcome.
Helping organize the drive in Delhi is Rotarian Debra Grisch.
“One of our members went to the food bank in Delhi and that’s what he was told – they need toothpaste, toothbrushes and dental floss for kids,” Grisch said. “You go there and there are things for adults but not so much for kids. And feminine hygiene products – they also don’t get a lot of that.”
Items collected will be dispersed in collaboration with area food banks, the St. Vincent-DePaul Society, the Salvation Army and the Haldimand and Norfolk Women`s Shelter.
This is the third time since 2018 that local Rotarians have collaborated on a Day of Action.
In 2018, club members donated floral arrangements to seniors at 12 nursing homes across Norfolk. In 2019, Rotarians’ Day of Action involved planting 4,200 daffodil bulbs along the Norfolk Sunrise Walking Trail.
The Simcoe Rotary Club, the Delhi Rotary Club and the Rotary Club of Norfolk Sunrise are members of District 7090 of Rotary International. District 7090 encompasses 70 Rotary chapters in Southwestern Ontario and western New York state.