Surrey/Langley area won’t have Operation Red Nose service this holiday season

Surrey/Langley area won’t have Operation Red Nose service this holiday season

Canada-wide safe-ride program looks for a new non-profit operator for next year

SURREY — Operation Red Nose, the by-donation driving service that aims to rid Canadian streets of impaired drivers during the holiday season, won’t be operating in the Surrey/Langley area this year.

“The previous organization is no longer able to deliver it, so there is an opening for a new non-profit to run it for next year,” Chris Wilson, provincial spokesperson for Operation Red Nose, told the Now-Leader in an email.

As a fundraiser, the driving service is delivered by local non-profit organizations tasked with finding enough volunteers to do the driving.

In Surrey and Langley, Operation Red Nose has been operated by Langley Gymnastics Foundation for more than a decade.

Last year at this time, service organizers with the gymnastics club were desperate to find more volunteer drivers.

“We have and need 300 volunteers usually,” Melissa Coombes, spokesperson for the local chapter, told the Now in November of 2016. “Those volunteers will often sign up for more than one night. We essentially need 100 of them each night, but right now we’re not even close. Not even half that.”

Coombes no longer works as gym manager at Langley Gymnastics, a receptionist for the organization said Tuesday.

Wilson runs the Operation Red Nose program in the New Westminster, Burnaby and Tri-Cities area. There, donations for the driving service benefit the KidSport organization in Port Moody, Port Coquitlam and Coquitlam.

“We’ll be trying our best to service clients that need to either go from our area into Surrey and Langley or vice versa,” Wilson noted.

“We realize this is not the ideal situation and are very hopeful that another organization will see this as an opportunity to take on a great community project that’s also a fundraiser for their organization for next year.”

Details about becoming a host organization can be found online at operationrednose.com.

The organization’s 34th annual campaign was launched in Maple Ridge on Nov. 9, in partnership with ICBC.

• READ MORE: Operation Red Nose Ridge Meadows celebrates 10 years, from Nov. 14.

More than 55,000 volunteers are getting ready to take part in what’s called “Canada’s largest safe-ride-home service,” according to a media advisory.

On nine nights from Nov. 24 to Dec. 31, Operation Red Nose will be available in 101 Canadian communities, 11 of which are located in British Columbia. Communities covered include Abbotsford/Mission, Burnaby, Chilliwack, Delta/Richmond, Kamloops, New Westminster, North Vancouver/West Vancouver, Prince George, Ridge Meadows, Tri-Cities and Williams Lake.

• READ MORE: Volunteer drivers sought for Operation Red Nose in Surrey-Langley, from November 2016.

Since it came to B.C. in 1996, “the program has grown from two host groups to 11, serving 19 communities and providing over 94,100 safe rides home,” according to a post at icbc.com.

“In 2016, 3,747 dedicated volunteers across 12 B.C. communities gave 5,448 rides to get people and their vehicles home safely while raising $150,674 for their local charities,” says the post.

• READ MORE: Operation Red Nose Langley-Surrey helpers come through on snowy New Year’s Eve, from January 2017.

The program is named in honour of Rudolph, “the most famous reindeer of all.”

“On most Friday and Saturday nights during the holiday season, if you’ve been drinking or are too tired to drive home, call 1-877-604-NOSE or on the mobile app and a team of three Operation Red Nose volunteers will help you get home safely,” says the post on ICBC’s website.

“One volunteer will drive your vehicle, a second volunteer will navigate, and a third volunteer will follow in an escort vehicle to pick up the two volunteers once they drop you off. Donations to Operation Red Nose are gratefully accepted and help fund local youth sports and other not-for-profit organizations.”



tom.zillich@surreynowleader.com

Like us on Facebook and follow Tom on Twitter

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

Just Posted

A science class at L.A. Matheson Secondary. March 2021. (Photo: Lauren Collins)
Reports of student attendance ‘dwindling’ at Surrey schools: teachers’ association

STA president said he’s heard from staff that students might not attend in-person for 4th quarter

(Photo: MOSAIC/Facebook)
Organization receives $10K from B.C. government to tackle racism in Surrey, White Rock

Funding to go toward forum for International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination

A police officer aims a radar gun at oncoming traffic during a school-zone speed trap traffic blitz outside Peace Arch Elementary in 2017. (File photo)
White Rock council heeds residents’ plea for better speed signage

Roper Avenue concerns note proximity of two elementary schools

Rainbow trouts thrashing with life as they’re about to be transferred to the largest lake of their lives, even though it’s pretty small. These rainbows have a blue tinge because they matched the blue of their hatchery pen, but soon they’ll take on the green-browns of their new home at Lookout Lake. (Zoe Ducklow/News Staff)
VIDEO: B.C. lake stocked with hatchery trout to delight of a seniors fishing club

The Cherish Trout Scouts made plans to come back fishing soon

Pall Bearers carrying the coffin of the Duke of Edinburgh, followed by the Prince of Wales, left and Princess Anne, right, into St George’s Chapel for his funeral, at Windsor Castle, in Windsor, England, Saturday April 17, 2021. (Danny Lawson/Pool via AP)
Trudeau announces $200K donation to Duke of Edinburgh award as Prince Philip laid to rest

A tribute to the late prince’s ‘remarkable life and his selfless service,’ the Prime Minister said Saturday

B.C. homeowners are being urged to take steps to prepare for the possibility of a flood by moving equipment and other assets to higher ground. (J.R. Rardon)
‘Entire province faces risk’: B.C. citizens urged to prepare for above-average spring flooding

Larger-than-normal melting snowpack poses a threat to the province as warmer weather touches down

Vancouver-based Doubleview Gold Corp. is developing claims in an area north of Telegraph Creek that occupies an important place in Tahltan oral histories, said Chad Norman Day, president of the Tahltan Central Government. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO)
B.C. Indigenous nation opposes mineral exploration in culturally sensitive area

There’s “no way” the Tahltan would ever support a mine there, says Chad Norman Day, president of its central government

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

Stz’uminus Elder George Harris, Ladysmith Mayor Aaron Stone, and Stz’uminus Chief Roxanne Harris opened the ceremony. (Cole Schisler photo)
Symbolic red dresses rehung along B.C. highway after vandals tore them down

Leaders from Stz’uminus First Nation and the Town of Ladysmith hung new dresses on Sat. April 17

A Western toadlet crosses the centre line of Elk View Road in Chilliwack on Aug. 26, 2010. A tunnel underneath the road has since been installed to help them migrate cross the road. Saturday, April 24 is Save the Frogs Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Progress File)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of April 18 to 24

Save the Frogs Day, Love Your Thighs Day and Scream Day are all coming up this week

Local carpenter Tyler Bohn embarked on a quest to create the East Sooke Treehouse, after seeing people build similar structures on a Discovery Channel show. (East Sooke Treehouse Facebook photo)
PHOTOS: B.C. carpenter builds fort inspired by TV’s ‘Treehouse Masters’

The whimsical structure features a wooden walking path, a loft, kitchen – and is now listed on Airbnb

The Attorney General’s Ministry says certain disputes may now be resolved through either a tribunal or the court system, pending its appeal of a B.C. Supreme Court decision that reduced the tribunal’s jurisdiction. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)
Court of Appeal grants partial stay in ruling on B.C. auto injuries

B.C. trial lawyers challenged legislation brought in to cap minor injury awards and move smaller court disputes to the Civil Resolution Tribunal

Most Read