Nora Zhu (centre row, right) and her friends chat on a Zoom call earlier this year, as they made plans to launch a fundraising campaign to help Peace Arch Hospital workers during the COVID-19 pandemic. (Contributed photo)

Southridge students raise $5,600 for hospital meal program

GoFundMe campaign funds two months of meals at Peace Arch Hospital

A Southridge School student and a group of her classmates raised more than $5,000 for frontline health-care workers this spring, with the money helping fund a meal program at Peace Arch Hospital.

Back in late March, as the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic was just coming into focus, 16-year-old Nora Zhu was speaking with her aunt, who works at a large hospital in China. From that conversation, she learned about how overworked the frontline workers there were, and was spurred into action closer to home.

“My aunt said doctors there were working so many hours a day, and were so tired. And in addition to self-quarantining in the hospitals, just had no time or energy to make themselves proper meals,” Zhu said.

“The conditions seemed really horrible, so I did some research and talked to some of my friends who have parents or family members working in hospitals here to see if the conditions in B.C. hospitals were similar.

“I found out that (working conditions) weren’t as bad as in China… but there were still many doctors and nurses who were self-quarantining (away from their families), they were working a lot of overtime, they were tired.”

READ ALSO: South Surrey coffee shop sets up gift-card campaign to thank health-care workers

As a way to help, Zhu decided she wanted to try to set up a meal-delivery program for front-line workers at Peace Arch Hospital, raising money and partnering with local restaurants to deliver food to busy, overworked staff.

The teen was inspired to help at PAH “on account of my family members and I have visited many times.”

After contacting the hospital, she found out that such a program had already been started by the Peace Arch Hospital Foundation, so she changed course, and decided to gather up some friends and raise money for the already-running initiative instead.

After a handful of Zoom calls with her fellow organizers, a GoFundMe account was launched, and over the next few months raised $5,605.

They were also able to bring one more restaurant on board with the hospital’s program, Zhu said.

The GoFundMe campaign officially closed June 1, and the money was sent to the meal-delivery organizers. With each meal costing between $8-$13, Zhu said their efforts were able to pay for more than 500 meals.

“About seven or eight weeks’ worth,” she said.

While the core group of fundraisers included Zhu and seven friends – Jonathan Hilton, Stanford Guo, Tatum Byrne, Alyssai Hai, Edward Cui, Coco Li, and Aerin Brown – she said there were dozens more who helped get the word out behind the scenes.

“In the end, my team and I were very proud… we were able to give back to our community,” Zhu said.



editorial@peacearchnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

#wereinthistogetherCoronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

BC ACORN report calls on Surrey to help renters

Report contains steps on how the City of Surrey can “ease” the city’s housing crisis

First Police Board meeting Thursday a ‘pivotal moment’ in Surrey’s history, mayor says

The 10 a.m. “virtual” meeting Aug. 6 will be live-streamed and details on tuning in will be available at surrey.ca/policeboard

Parking facility for 100 trucks coming to North Surrey at cost of $30M

‘It’s often difficult to find suitable parking for large transport trucks,’ says association boss

Keno machine shutdown was no tech glitch, it was $50K prize for Surrey woman

Ticket checked at the Panorama Shell store in Surrey

B.C. records 146 new COVID-19 cases through long weekend

More that 28 people tested positive for the virus each day since Friday

COVID-19 vaccine efforts provide hope but no silver bullet to stop pandemic: Tam

There are more than two dozen vaccines for COVID-19 in clinical trials around the world

Staff member tests positive for COVID-19 at Maple Ridge Seniors Village

Fraser Health is on site implementing outbreak protocols at the seniors care facility

Two people die in propane heated outdoor shower near Princeton

Couple was attending a long weekend gathering

Study shines light on what makes LGBTQ+ youth feel safe in a community

The study goes beyond looking at school or family supports

Alberta to require masks at schools this fall, but still no mandate in B.C.

B.C. students are also set to return to classrooms in September

Gangster Jarrod Bacon released from prison for third time

Parole board continues to express concerns about Bacon’s behaviour

B.C. to allow customers to buy cannabis online for in-store pickup at private shops

Age verification will still be required inside the store

30% of British Columbians would ‘wait and see’ before taking COVID vaccine: poll

Some are concerned about side effects, while others don’t think the virus is a big deal

Most Read