When Brooke Garcia realized her 4Seasons staff were about to be laid off indefinitely, she knew she had to do something.
“My initial thought was, what’s the two things people are going to be worried about? That’s shelter and food. So how can we help them? How can we relieve the stress?” Brooke said.
That morning in early March Brooke rounded up two school buses and several staff and headed for the nearest Costco. Clerks wondered why she was buying so many cases of crackers, apple sauce, oatmeal, peanut butter, pasta, granola bars and tuna. They wouldn’t question it today.
“My mind went to instantly just to being able to support them through giving them a care package,” said Brooke. “And then also finding activities for the children, because I know as a parent those are my two biggest concerns when I’m at home.”
Since that first shopping run in early March there have been five more trips to the big food warehouse, and a series of outings to dollar stores for books and puzzles. Meanwhile 4Seasons HR staff have been reaching out to see who in our community needs help.
This week the food drive began.
First-aid instructor Randy Roberts was happy to see some familiar faces at the doorstep. “We saw a couple of the kids that I know, and my name was yelled out, ‘Randy!’ So that was kind of cool.”
This week 24 care packages are being delivered to families across Calgary and Rocky View County. “It feels great to be able to make a difference,” said Randy. “It’s not like you’ve dropped off one little package of chocolates. Some of these things are going to last families for a few weeks, so it’s rewarding to see that.”
We’re isolated from each other, from our friends, our schools and our regular lives. But we’re all in this together. And providing help to some needy families is another way for us to show how much we care.
“At 4Seasons what really matters is our people, regardless if it’s our students or their families, or our own staff,” said Brooke. “We are just passing on a little bit of good, and hopefully they can do the same for others.”
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