Operation Red Nose Surrey-Langley could close for rest of season due to lack of volunteers

Operation Red Nose Surrey-Langley could close for rest of season due to lack of volunteers

Organizers say they are struggling to keep up with high call numbers and long wait times

While the interest is high this holiday season for using Operation Red Nose (ORN) as a safe way to get home, a lack of volunteers may shut the local service down for the remainder of its scheduled run.

The volunteer service, facilitated by Langley Minor Hockey Association (LMHA), did manage to complete over 110 safe rides during their second weekend out in the community, Dec. 6 and 7.

But Michelle Cowan, vice president of operations for LMHA, the service could have done so much more.

“On Saturday alone, we had almost 20 callers for the service look elsewhere because of the wait times. Additionally, another 10 cancelled after booking their rides for the same reason,” Cowan said.

After a two-year absence in Surrey and Langley, the LMHA team say the high number of calls is a positive sign that ORN does have support; but without drivers, there’s no way the service can continue.

“We could have used at least five more drive teams Saturday night,” Cowan explained. “Our volunteers worked tirelessly through until about 4 a.m. each night.”

Because of so few names signed up for the coming weeks – particularly New Year’s Eve – Cowan said Surrey-Langley is in danger of not having ORN as an option as the holiday’s get into full swing.

“There is huge interest in using the service, but without the volunteers, we may be forced to end the campaign,” she said.

ORN accepts volunteers all season along; all interested applicants have to do is fill out a form – available at www.langleyminorhockey.ca.

The service is executed in teams; one volunteer drives, a second navigates, and a third volunteer follows in an escort vehicle to pick up the volunteers.

READ MORE: More than 60 safe rides home given in Langley over first Operation Red Nose Weekend

People do not need to sign up in teams to volunteer – anyone interested is welcome and will be assigned to a group.

Driver’s licenses are not required for all volunteers either; navigators are needed to help direct drivers.

For those who can get behind the wheel, ICBC will issue special coverage on volunteer vehicles for the evening.

“Additionally, we had some incredible support from the RCMP and ICBC this weekend,” Cowan added. “They toured around with our Rudy promotional team, and even let Rudy help out at a road block.”

Covering all of Langley-Township and Surrey, ORN is scheduled every Friday and Saturday night, 9 p.m. to 3 a.m. as well as Tuesday, Dec. 31. – New Year’s Eve.

The service runs on donations, any money given by ORN users will go towards LHMA to help bring down fees for young hockey players.

_________________________________

Is there more to this story?

Email: ryan.uytdewilligen@langleyadvancetimes.com

Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter

_________________________________

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

 

Operation Red Nose Surrey-Langley could close for rest of season due to lack of volunteers

Just Posted

Two teens were sent to hospital after being stabbed Saturday evening. (Shane MacKichan photo)
Two teens stabbed in Abbotsford

20-year-old man has been detained

The annual Make a Difference Sale in Abbotsford is moving online for 2021. (File photo)
Make a Difference Sale in Abbotsford goes virtual for 2021

Annual auction raises money for world hunger through Canadian Foodgrains Bank

The Bug Girl, written by seven-year-old Sophia Spencer, is being given to 500 B.C. classrooms as part of Canadian Agriculture Literacy Month. (Submitted photos)
Reading challenges part of Canadian Agriculture Literacy Month

Abbotsford-based BC Agriculture in the Classroom participates in 10th annual event

B.C. Supreme Court in Vancouver on Tuesday December 11, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C.’s compromise on in-person worship at three churches called ‘absolutely unacceptable’

Would allow outdoor services of 25 or less by Langley, Abbotsford and Chilliwack churches

Police tape is shown in Toronto Tuesday, May 2, 2017. (Graeme Roy/The Canadian Press)
CRIME STOPPERS: ‘Most wanted’ for the week of Feb. 28

Crime Stoppers’ weekly list based on information provided by police investigators

A health worker holds a vial of AstraZeneca vaccine to be administered to members of the police at a COVID-19 vaccination center in Mainz, Germany, Thursday, Feb. 25, 2021. The federal state of Rhineland-Palatinate, start with the vaccination of police officers in internal police vaccination centers. (Andreas Arnold/dpa via AP)
B.C. officials to unveil new details of COVID vaccination plan Monday

Seniors and health-care workers who haven’t gotten their shot are next on the list

An investigation is underway after a man was shot and killed by Tofino RCMP in Opitsaht. (Black Press Media file photo)
Man shot and killed by RCMP near Tofino, police watchdog investigating

Investigation underway by Independent Investigations Office of British Columbia.

Baldy Mountain Resort was shut down on Saturday after a fatal workplace accident. (Baldy Mountain picture)
Jasmine and Gwen Donaldson are part of the CAT team working to reduce stigma for marginalized groups in Campbell River. Photo by Marc Kitteringham, Campbell River Mirror
Jasmine’s story: Stigma can be the hardest hurdle for those overcoming addiction

Recovering B.C. addict says welcome, connection and community key for rebuilding after drug habit

A Vancouver restaurant owner was found guilty of violating B.C.’s Human Rights Code by discriminating against customers on the basis of their race. (Pixabay)
Vancouver restaurant owner ordered to pay $4,000 to customers after racist remark

Referring to patrons as ‘you Arabs’ constitutes discrimination under B.C.’s Human Rights Code, ruling deems

Approximate location of the vehicle incident. (Google Maps)
Vehicle incident blocking Coquihalla traffic in both directions

Both directions of traffic stopped due to vehicle incident

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Judith Uwamahoro is Black, approximately 4’7″ tall, 80 pounds and has short black hair and brown eyes. (Surrey RCMP handout)
UPDATED: Lower Mainland 9-year-old located after police make public plea

Judith Uwamahoro went missing Friday at around 4 p.m. in Surrey

Most Read