Pack the Back has been a popular event for Labrador Grenfell Health since they started it in 2014. It started at just one location and has now spread to five across Labrador and the Great Northern Peninsula.
Antoinette Cabot, Regional Director of Population Health, Ambulatory Care and Paramedicine with LGH, said it has grown due to how supportive the community has been of the annual Christmas time event.
Pack the Back is an event that they put off to help those a little less fortunate, Cabot said, those who need a helping hand around Christmas time. The public is asked to bring toys, non-perishable food items, personal health items and some items for pets, which are used to literally ‘Pack the Back’ of the ambulances.
“I think it’s a good example of community networking. We’re very proud of our paramedics in the organization, this is driven by them. They take the time to make the arrangements, make the connections, to sit out in the cold and receive all these packages, with our partners of course. Its very heartwarming to see the public come together to support children and families that need a little bit of a helping hand during the Christmas season.”
It was held in Labrador City on Dec. 1 and Cabot said it went great, with lots of supplies and packages delivered to the ambulances in front of the mall.
She said it’s also an opportunity for LGH to give back to the community.
“We receive so much from the community in donations and things so it’s nice for our paramedics to be so giving and want to help. It aligns so much with their role, to be able to be a part of this initiative.”
Pack the Back was already held in Roddickton-Bide Arm and Flower’s Cove Friday, Dec. 8 and in St. Anthony on Dec. 9. It’s being held in Happy Valley-Goose Bay on Saturday, Dec. 16, from 10 a.m.-4 p.m., at the Labrador Health. They are asking for non-perishable food items for the local Food Bank and unwrapped toys (all ages) for the Emergency Room Nurses’ Happy Tree.