Thanks to a Niagara-on-the-Lake resident, migrant workers arriving in NOTL will receive a little extra warm welcome.
Village resident Mark Brown donated more than 50 yellow and blue ski jackets for the migrant workers’ welcome kits Tuesday.
Brown, who is a president of the Canadian Ski Patrol Central Zone Ontario, said since the patrollers’ uniform colours changed from yellow and blue to red and white about five years ago, volunteers weren’t able to use old uniforms any more.
Some of the donated jackets have been gently used, while the majority haven’t been used at all, Brown said.
“Many of (the workers) coming from the south don’t have winter clothing, so we thought this would be a good cause,” Brown told The Lake Report. “Our mission is to help people, so the fact that we’re able to help some visitors to Canada is great.”
Brown said he decided to donate the jackets to the workers after hearing about their arrival from his neighbour Dianne Hughes, who said it was all about raising awareness.
“Three years ago, you couldn’t get anybody to reach out and now they’re thinking of us first,” she told The Lake Report. “More neighbours are involved now with the Peach Pickers Picnic and give donations. That kind of thinking wasn’t there three years ago. That’s so awesome.”
Virgil’s Cornerstone Community Church has also provided a room for storing items donated for the workers’ welcome kits.
Henry Schein Canada has donated toothbrushes, toothpaste and dental floss. NOTL residents, who have been organizing the welcome bags, also purchased 500 gloves, while the St. Andrews Glen Homeowners Association donated reflective safety vests and safety harnesses.