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The second annual “Pack the Back” held on Saturday, December 7, 2019 was a “overwhelming” success.
St. John Ambulance partnered with Northumberland County Paramedics and had ambulance vehicles at four locations in Cobourg and Brighton including No Frills, Canadian Tire, and All Creatures Great and Small.
At approximately 3:30 p.m. all the vehicles met at the Salvation Army on Ballantine Street in Cobourg.
St. John Ambulance Northumberland Deputy Chief Erin Cann organized the event in cooperation with Northumberland County Paramedics.
The aim of the event is to raise food, toys, pet food, monetary donations for the Salvation Army and The Giving Tree.
Along with St. John Ambulance and Northumberland County Paramedics were representatives from Cobourg Police Youth In Policing Initiative.
“The community was so generous with what they gave,” said Cann.
At the end of the day there were 11 shopping carts full of toys dropped off at Northumberland Mall for The Giving Tree.
Over $2,000 and four ambulance vehicles full of non-perishable food.
The paramedic that was with Cann said, “it restored my faith in humanity. It’s amazing to see people giving back to people in need.”
Major Michael Simpson from the Salvation Army said he was “overwhelmed” at the response from the community.
“This event is huge,” said Simpson.
“The communities of Cobourg and Brighton have really stepped up and we’re able to do a lot of good.”
“It’s probably three times what we received last year.”
Simpson said the food will go to those who directly need it, not only at Christmas time, but well beyond Christmas into the new year.
“I’ve said it before. It would be perfect if we didn’t need to exist in this capacity, but it’s only through partnerships and the community who makes it work.”
Simpson adds a huge thank you to St. John Ambulance and Northumberland Paramedics. “Without their help there wouldn’t be any of the food. It’s a tremendous help.”