Thieves make off with Pedvac do­na­tions


- It’s hard for peo­ple con­nected with Pedvac (Port El­gin dis­trict vol­un­tary ac­tion coun­cil) to be­lieve, but a per­son or per­sons has ap­par­ently been steal­ing do­na­tions of cloth­ing and other goods given to the public ad­vo­cacy or­ga­ni­za­tion.

Pedvac ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor Val Mac­der­mid said re­cently that just last week the or­ga­ni­za­tion be­came aware that an un­known num­ber of bags of do­nated goods, which had been left out­side the build­ing on Church Street in Port El­gin af­ter reg­u­lar busi­ness hours, had been stolen.

“It’s hard to be­lieve that any­one would take stuff that had been do­nated to Pedvac, but that’s ap­par­ently what’s been go­ing on lately,” she said.

Mac­der­mid said that, although the prob­lem came to their at­ten­tion just last week, it’s un­known how long this has been go­ing one.

“Re­cently a per­son who do­nates things to us reg­u­larly called to say that a bag of items that had been dropped off at the door af­ter hours had ap­par­ently in­cluded some things that were not meant to be given away. They asked if we could please hold those items here for them, how­ever, none of the bags of goods they had dropped off were here when the staff ar­rived the next morn­ing. We have since re­al­ized that this has hap­pened on at least one other oc­ca­sion lately; but it could be hap­pen­ing fre­quently,” she ad­mit­ted.

Mac­der­mid said the Pedvac staff finds this very frus­trat­ing, given that the do­nated items are sold at very low prices in the or­ga­ni­za­tion’s on-site ‘bou­tique’.

“Pedvac is here for peo­ple when they need a help­ing hand. If you need cloth­ing or house­hold goods and have no money to buy it, we’ll gladly give it to you,” she ex­plained.

The or­ga­ni­za­tion will be look­ing into hav­ing a locked col­lec­tion box built and placed out­side of the build­ing, Mac­der­mid said.

“We had an open col­lec­tion box out­side of the build­ing for sev­eral years but peo­ple would some­times put garbage in it, or at times they would go through the bags left in the box and dump it all over the yard. So we even­tu­ally just got rid of it. It’s un­for­tu­nate that we have to spend money that would oth­er­wise be in­vested in some of our pro­grams and ser­vices, to make an­other col­lec­tion box. Hope­fully we can get some of the ma­te­ri­als for it do­nated,” she added.

Founded in 1984, Pedvac is a public ser­vice or­ga­ni­za­tion pro­vid­ing as­sis­tance when needed for res­i­dents of the Port El­gin area and be­yond. Among some of the pro­grams and ser­vices pro­vided at the Port El­gin lo­ca­tion are food bank, lit­er­acy ser­vices, youth pro­grams, ad­vo­cacy, con­fi­den­tial as­sis­tance for lo­cal school’s hot lunch pro­gram for chil­dren of food bank clients, in­come tax prepa­ra­tion and used cloth­ing, fur­ni­ture and house­hold goods bou­tique.

For more in­for­ma­tion on Pedvac pro­grams and ser­vices con­tact the or­ga­ni­za­tion at 506538-7638, Tues­day through Satur­day from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.


Pedvac bou­tique man­ager Su­san Allen places some items of cloth­ing on racks at the sec­ond-hand cloth­ing and fur­ni­ture store that is part of the public ad­vo­cacy or­ga­ni­za­tion’s pro­grams and ser­vices in Port El­gin.

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