Volvo Cars is one of the most recognized brands in the world, and a pioneer in safety. In fact, they were the first car manufacturer to invent the three-point safety belt in 1959, saving an estimated one million lives in the process. That commitment to safety took on a whole new meaning when the COVID-19 pandemic hit.
Volvo Cars Canada saw what many Canadians were seeing on the news at the start of the pandemic. Essential front line workers were not getting the sufficient personal protective equipment (PPE) needed to serve an increasing number of patients. With the first wave of safety and social distancing measures in effect, the team made the decision to ground its press fleet across Canada, leaving a large number of cars unused. Through this they saw an opportunity to use these cars for what they were designed to do: protect what is important.
Safety has always been one of the core values for Volvo, and that took on a whole new meaning during the COVID-19 pandemic.”
- Matt Girgis, Managing Director of Volvo Cars Canada
This led to a partnership with Conquer COVID-19, a grassroots volunteer group who were facilitating access to PPE such as masks, gloves, and other priority products and supplies that are essential for front line healthcare workers and primary care providers in treating patients and minimizing the spread of the virus. The organization, which began as an idea among six friends, grew into a multidisciplinary team with 120 volunteers at its peak including: front line healthcare workers, engineers, business leaders, entrepreneurs, medical students, NGO members, and Canadian legends Hayley Wickenheiser and Ryan Reynolds, who all came together for the greater good.
3M PPE delivered. 410 sites. 184 towns and cities. 8 provinces. 1 territory.
Conquer COVID-19 needed the freedom to move safely through a country in lockdown. Volvo Cars Canada was humbled to have played a part in helping this special group of volunteers protect those who protected us. Volvo supported the effort by supplying 18 vehicles, along with gas and insurance, to the group’s Quebec and Ontario volunteer drivers who covered 47,249 kilometers in Volvo’s fleet while delivering vital PPE to help keep Canadian communities safe.
After five months of work, Conquer COVID-19 helped to get more than three million items of PPE into the hands of front line healthcare workers and vulnerable communities across the country. A total of 464 deliveries were made (265 of these deliveries were made using Volvo’s fleet) to over 410 sites, including hospitals, community clinics, long term care facilities, home care facilities, doctor’s offices, homeless shelters, indigenous health centres, and more. The deliveries ensured these essential items got into the hands of those organizations in need: surgical masks, respirators, face shields, procedural gloves, gowns, baby monitors, and tablets; along with items needed by shelters, including diapers, formula, and feminine hygiene products.
Having Volvo as a partner was a significant turning point for Conquer COVID-19, allowing us to go beyond the GTA and reach communities deep in Ontario and Quebec’s vast landscape.”
- Laurie Dillon-Schalk, co-founder of Conquer COVID-19
In recognition of the great contributions of Volvo Cars Canada, and to mark the launch of Interac e-Transfer† for Business, Scotiabank has made a $5,000 donation in Volvo Cars Canada’s name to Seeds of Hope.
Interac e-Transfer for Business is a safe way to receive funds and eliminate cheque fraud. Find out more.