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A few years ago, when Krisandra Rufus got a call from her nephew simply telling her he was hungry and had no food. Krisandra made him a meal and had her husband deliver it to the location her nephew had given.
When her husband returned, he told her that not only was her nephew homeless, but he was in an area where a lot of other people were in the same situation.
Krisandra soon learned that there was no hot meal program available in Campbell River and began a personal project wherein she now provides one evening meal, 365 days per year, to a group of 35 to 50 people, many of them elderly… “elders” as she calls them.
“I’m First Nations,” Rufus explained, “and in my culture you respect the elderly. Only two of the elderly getting meals are First Nations, but I don’t care about your race. Everyone in that situation deserves respect and help.”
Hayley Wood first came into contact with Krisandra when her son’s karate club went to help her out one night.
“I saw the work she was doing and how dedicated she was, and knew I had to help,” said Wood. “I made the commitment to cook one meal a week for her, so she had a chance to catch her breath a little. She gets food donations, and cooks and raises funds however she can…it’s a lot.”
Wood soon became aware of another problem.
Krisandra’s work was being complicated because her 21 year old Mercury wasn’t up to the challenge of gathering donations and delivering the meals to the homeless.
“I work in sales at North Island Nissan and it seemed both ironic and wrong that Krisandra didn’t have a car to do the work she was doing. So I’ve partnered with North Island Nissan and I’m donating a portion of every one of my commissions to a fund to get Krisandra a more reliable car. It’s only right that someone who gives so much of herself should get some help in return,” said Wood.
Anyone wishing to help in the effort can choose to go to North Island Nissan and purchase a car from Wood, but they may choose to simply drop down to the dealership, browse through the vehicles and leave a cash donation to the cause at the dealership.
“I know everyone isn’t going to run out and buy a car from me to support this cause,” said Wood with a chuckle. “Between donations and the portion of commissions I’m donating, we should be able to get a car for this amazing woman…she gives so much of herself to help those who are truly in need.”
Wood said that anyone dropping off a donation should stop and say hello.
“I’d love to thank you personally.”