Emergency Medicine reaches out to help feed our community

News / General

Lionhearts Inc.'s COVID-19 Street Project is one of several ways KHSC is living its mission beyond our walls

Our mission of caring for others and each other at Kingston Health Sciences Centre has never been stronger in these difficult days of COVID-19.  Living that mission beyond our walls has sparked a generous pledge by our Emergency Medicine program to a vital community program, one of many that welcome our support at this time. 

Physicians, nurses and administrative staff in Emergency Medicine at Queen’s University and KHSC have pledged $35,000 in a dollar-for-dollar “Hometown Heroes Challenge” matching campaign to support the Covid-19 Street Project, spearheaded by Lionhearts Inc. to feed the marginalized population of Kingston and area during this pandemic. 

“Our emergency healthcare teams are incredibly grateful for the tremendous community support they’ve received during the COVID-19 crisis,” says Dr. David Messenger, Head of the Department of Emergency Medicine at Queen’s University and KHSC.

“We want to express our thanks by reaching out to help meet the needs of our vulnerable neighbours.  As a community we’re stronger when we work together, so we’re encouraging others—individuals, businesses and other groups—to consider contributing to the Hometown Heroes campaign.”

The Hometown Heroes fundraising campaign is running throughout the month of June.  Organizers hope to raise $70,000 which will double to $140,000 with the matching funds.

Joining the Emergency Medicine team in providing matching funds is The Springer Group of Companies, which has also pledged $35,000 to the campaign. Kicking things off is a lead gift of $5000 comes from Olympic hockey superstar Jayna Hefford and the Professional Women’s Hockey Players Association.

Since launching the Covid-19 Street Project in mid-March, Lionhearts Inc. has served more than 30,000 meal packages across Kingston and Napanee. The packages include a nutritious meal along with bottled water, hygiene products and snacks to help recipients make it through the day.

You can make a donation to the Hometown Heroes Challenge here.

A few other local organizations welcome our support at this time including:

  • St. Mary’s Drop-In Centre—supporting the poor of Kingston

Just up the street from our HDH site is the St. Mary’s Drop-in Centre, where coats collected during our annual Coat Drive are distributed to those needing warm winter clothing during the wintry months. 

In February, the Centre morphed into a drop-in site just before the pandemic hit and is one of the few places where the poor and homeless can still go.   Open 1 to 4 p.m. each weekday, it averages about 30 visitors per day—ranging in age from mid-teens to early 70s—who pick up takeaway sandwiches, soup and snacks.  Soon they will also be able to grab a hot shower if they wish during their visit.

“The social isolation has been especially hard on many of our already vulnerable guests,” says Ann Lyng, Coordinator of Ministries at St. Mary’s Cathedral, “so while people are waiting for their food we make sure to check in on their well-being and needs.  We’re learning more about their lives and challenges.”

To continue providing much-needed services to the poor in Kingston, the Drop-in Centre can use your help.  Financial support is critical.  Food and clothing donations are also welcome and can be dropped off at the Drop-in Centre at 260 Brock Street (corner of Brock and Clergy Streets) Monday to Friday, 1 to 4 p.m.  Gently used or new clothing and furniture is also needed.

For more information, contact Ann Lyn at 613-546-5521, ext. 5 or ministries.smc.279@gmail.com.

  • Partners in Mission Food Bank

With its annual May Food Blitz postponed due to the pandemic, the Food Bank welcomes support more than ever this year.  June is the perfect month to consider a donation!  Until June 30, any donations made to Partners in Mission Food Bank through its online donation portal will enter the Food Bank into a draw to win $20,000 courtesy of the Great Canadian Giving Challenge. Partners in Mission Food Bank will automatically receive one (1) entry for each dollar donated (minimum donation of $3) through its website.  To learn more and donate, please click here.

  • Kingston Youth Shelter

The Kingston Youth Shelter has been working hard to remain open during the COVID-19 pandemic.  As always, it relies on the generosity of our community to continue providing youth the necessary support they need to move forward.  Along with financial support, they welcome donations of food, personal care items, bus passes, gift cards and more.  To learn more and donate, please click here.