Wrapped up for the Holidays launches for 14th year

Photo from Parkland Ambulance Twitter account. A volunteer helps sort items collected during Wrapped up for the Holidays last Christmas.

For the 14th year Parkland Ambulance, CTV and the Gateway Mall have partnered together to support those who need stay warm this winter.

Wrapped Up for the Holidays has launched its 14th annual campaign, and the organizations cannot believe how quickly that time has gone.

“It’s hard to believe that for 14 years with our partners at CTV and the Gateway Mall, we have been collecting blankets and over time evolved to collect any type of winter gear that anyone is happy to give,” Lyle Karasiuk, Director of Public Affairs with Parkland Ambulance said. “(It’s) all in the name of keeping those in need warm and safe this winter.

“We collect blankets, toques, mitts, scarves, boots, coats of all sizes from kids to adults and blankets and any winter gear that you can get in the name of keeping everyone warm and safe,” he added.

They will be collecting blankets and any warm winter clothing of all sizes and shapes.

Mitten, toques, boots, coats from adults to children. The only criteria is that they ask that items be clean and in good shape.

“And by good shape, I mean the boots have laces—if you are bringing boots—and a coat that has a zipper that works,” he said.

“We don’t have the mechanisms or the ability to go out and get these items fixed and sadly they would go to waste. We ask that they be clean just so that we can share them with folks without having to get them cleaned as well.”

The partnership is important because it serves a great need in the community, according to Karisuk.

“We decided 14 years ago with our partners that we wanted to give back to our community and to find a way to keep those in need from having frozen fingers or not being able to have a good pair of boots or a toque if it’s really cold out,” he said.

Karasiuk added that homelessness is a major topic of discussion lately in Prince Albert, which makes the need for winter gear even more important.

“If that is not a motivating factor for folks, I don’t know what is,” he said. “Those that have a small worn out blanket in some shape or form can be made to be of great use for someone who is in need.”

Items can be dropped off at either Parkland Ambulance locations, or in the bin located in front of the food court at the Gateway Mall. He said that the drop off at the Gateway Mall is great if you are doing Christmas shopping or happen to be in the area.

The office on Second Avenue has reception from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and they will gladly take items at that time.

“If there is no one there and you are just in a rush, by all means just leave them outside the door,” Karasiuk said. “We don’t encourage that but you know what, if you can’t make it back we will take it.”