Students from Wishart Elementary School joined representatives from the City of Colwood, staff and members of the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 91 at City Hall on Friday for the launch of the 2018 poppy campaigns. Students had some thoughtful questions for the veterans, asking how old they were when they joined the military, what it was like to be in the war, and whether they had been affected by PTSD. (Photo courtesy of the City of Colwood)

Students from Wishart Elementary School joined representatives from the City of Colwood, staff and members of the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 91 at City Hall on Friday for the launch of the 2018 poppy campaigns. Students had some thoughtful questions for the veterans, asking how old they were when they joined the military, what it was like to be in the war, and whether they had been affected by PTSD. (Photo courtesy of the City of Colwood)

Annual poppy campaign kicks off Friday

Langford Mayor Stew Young receives first poppy, urges residents to support the cause

The annual poppy campaign officially launched on the West Shore Friday with Langford Mayor Stew Young receiving the first poppy.

“It’s about the sacrifices that have been made for our country, for the armed forces and what you guys do for our country, it is noticed across the world,” Young said to the crowd gathered outside the Legion in Langford.

READ MORE: Royal Canadian Legion seeks poppy campaign volunteers

While not just a symbol of remembrance, the campaign also has a huge impact on the local community. Put on by the Royal Canadian Legion Prince Edward Branch 91, funds raised through the sale of poppies goes to local veterans in need and their families. Donations also go to community groups.

“Everybody, get out there and get involved, and put your money into this campaign. It’s the best thing you can do,” Young said, patting the poppy on his chest. “Remembrance Day is coming up on Nov. 11, make sure you wear it proudly.”

Read More: Remembrance Day brings back memories for Langford veteran

Last year, the Legion raised approximately $83,000 through the campaign and this year, Legion president Norm Scott hopes to raise $100,000.

But volunteers are still needed to collect donations from now until Nov. 10.

Scott said volunteers typically sign up for two-hour shifts between 10 a.m. and 8 p.m. for the two weeks leading up to Remembrance Day. That translates to up to 70 volunteers needed a day to cover between 12 to 14 locations on the West Shore.

Read More: Legion poppy donations benefit more than veterans

Those interested in volunteering with the poppy campaign can contact the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 91 in Langford at 250-478-1828.

– With files from Shalu Mehta


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katie@goldstreamgazette.com

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