The Sylvan Lake Legion is considering 2019 another successful year for its annual poppy campaign.
The annual fundraiser is organized by Branch No. 212, with volunteers distributing poppies for Remembrance Day. The funds raised through poppy sales go towards veteran support.
Funds from the campaign will also be used locally to provide support to Sylvan Lake members of the Royal Canadian Legion, says Sylvan Lake Legion President Ed Stevenson.
Stevenson says the funds raised through the Poppy Campaign this year will go towards “bettering the lives of local veterans and their families.” He gave the example of the wheel chair ramp which was built last year with funds from the campaign.
“The wonderful thing about this is we are seeing the local poppy find are being used to serve local veterans and their families,” said Stevenson.
This is just one use for the Poppy Campaign. The funds gathered from the campaign will help to provide financial support the Military Family Resource Centre and bursaries for post-secondary students.
The poppy drive also supports the Homeless Veteran Program and local cadet programs.
“The funds stay local and should be beneficial to our local veterans and our users,” said Stevenson.
The campaign began in Sylvan Lake on Oct. 25 and will continue until Remembrance Day on Nov. 11.
Poppies will be sold at the Remembrance Day service at the NexSource Centre.
On Nov. 2, the Legion also held its annual Poppy Blitz, where volunteers sold poppies at local businesses.
“The blitz went really well, and the businesses have been very supportive,” said Stevenson.
Royal Canadian Legion canvassers were out at five stores in Sylvan Lake; No Frills, Walmart, Canadian Tire, Sobeys and Shopper’s Drug Mart for the blitz.
Along with the poppy sales, the Legion has also been selling wreaths and crosses for the large ceremony at the NexSource Centre on Nov. 11.
Along with the sale of poppies and wreaths, volunteers have also been canvasing the town for donations from businesses.
Stevenson asks that all Sylvan Lake residents wear a poppy on Remembrance Day and make a donation, whatever they can, to the Poppy Campaign, as “every donation does make a difference.”
The annual Remembrance Day service will begin at 10:30 a.m. on Nov. 11, with the doors opening at 10 a.m. It is suggested those coming to the service get there early to make sure everyone has a seat.
Following the service, the Legion will be open for all to gather.
At 2 p.m. a second smaller ceremony will occur at the cenotaph. This ceremony involves the laying of a few wreaths and a moment of silence.