South Stormont Mayor Bryan McGillis wants to raise public awareness locally about the hardships our troops are undergoing in Afghanistan.
“I don’t have any personal reasons,” Mayor McGillis commented. “I don’t have any immediate family or friends serving over there, but I want our troops to know that regardless of our opinions about whether they should be there or not, we do absolutely support the troops themselves.”
With Christmas approaching, the troops in Afghanistan will be missing Canada and their families even more than usual. Local residents Brian Goodfellow and Eleanor Bookman have been stepping in to try to fill the gap for a while now, using their Red Ribbon Campaign to raise money for various military and veteran related charities. Since they began this project in November, 2006, they have raised over $40,000 for a number of military charities and support groups.
Brian and Eleanor started their project when they heard that the local Cornwall Kinettes were raising funds for their “Chosen Soldier Project,” to send care packages to the troops in Afghanistan. With this in mind, they designed their weatherproof, UV resistant magnetic ribbons, and overwhelmed the club with over $7,000. The idea won the Kinette National Service Award for the local chapter.
Many people throughout Canada have chosen to support our troops by displaying the red ribbon, and Brian and Eleanor keep busy publicising the project, distributing the ribbons, and most importantly, visiting local Canadian Forces facilities.
The ribbons and other merchandise can be ordered from their website. Alternatively, they can be picked up directly at the Petro Canada station on Brookdale and the 401, or at Island Ink-Jet and Internet Café, 8 Third St. West, in downtown Cornwall.