ST. PAUL – The St. Paul Regional Family Community Support Services’ (FCSS) Snow Angels program is well underway for the winter season, with several occasions of snowfall already experienced.
The program, which has been running for at least eight years, is aimed at assisting individuals who may have difficulty shovelling their sidewalks. This can include seniors, people with mobility issues, or people recuperating from an illness or surgery.
Residents of St. Paul are required by bylaw to have their sidewalks cleaned within 48 hours of a snowfall, and so, “We put out this program so that we could help those who are struggling to get that done,” said Lynn Smid, FCSS director.
She said that when residents see the FCSS’ blue and white Snow Angels sign on a property, “it’s basically a request to the community to help them.” Smid encourages community members who can help clear the snow from properties with a sign, to do so.
“We really are seeking the community’s assistance with helping out their neighbour.”
When asked how successful the program has been so far, Smid said it’s a hard one to judge, noting the program is only as successful as the community members who participate in it.
“We’re asking people to be kind and look around their neighbourhood,” to check if a property has a sign, and pick up a shovel to help if they can do so.
Those with signs truly need help and “that person wouldn’t have that sign on their property if they didn’t need assistance,” explained Smid.
According to Smid, people who do have the sign may not have the income to pay for snow clearing services. “You’re helping them out two-fold... physically and financially. So, those who benefit from this program are very thankful.”
For individuals needing a Snow Angel sign, they can stop into the St. Paul Regional FCSS office located at 5002-51 Ave. Snow Angels are also invited to call the FCSS office to add their names to the Snow Angels List, and FCSS will call if somebody requires assistance.