As part of the 11th Toys for the North Campaign, the RCMP partnered up with the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) who dropped off a plane full of toys in Iqaluit’s RCMP Hangar, which will be then distributed to various communities in Nunavut.
Every year the RCMP teams up with the RCAF and various toy companies to help bring toys to Northern children for Christmas, something V Division Commanding Officer Amanda Jones says she is thankful for.
“It’s a very exciting, a great initiative to bring toys up for young people up here in Nunavut, I think its just incredible,” said Jones. “The kids deserve it, they need a Christmas.”
This year the children of Iglulik, Sanikiluaq and Coral Harbour will be getting presents. Pond Inlet will also be getting a special set of gifts in the form of hockey gear. As of Dec. 7, officers and volunteers were still wrapping presents.
The RCAF and RCMP feel particularly warm about Toys for the North in Nunavut given how much it costs to buy and ship goods to the territory.
“When you think of how much it costs to transport stuff here, if we could help out and get stuff here for free it’s great,” said Acting Deputy Wing Commander Jenna Simpell, who flew in with the toys being dropped off in Iqaluit.
For Simpell it was also a chance to see another part of the RCAF’s operations she doesn’t normally see.
“I’m a logistics officer so I don’t really get to see this side of stuff. For me it was really interesting to see the Air Force in action, doing good for Canada, it’s an interesting and unique experience,” Simpell said.
She later adds the RCAF is excited to take part in Toys for the North and to be a part of Operation LENTUS, the latter is to help purify Iqaluit’s river water as part of the ongoing water crisis aid.
Toys for the North has been bringing toys to remote Northern regions since 2010, and despite recent challenges presented by Covid-19, it continues to press on.
In addition to Iqaluit, other hubs to drop-off toys for Toys for the North include Happy Valley-Goose Bay, NL and Thunder Bay, ON.