PHOTOS: Call for Surrey COVID-19 submissions tops 300

Tavisha Kochhar sews masks for her fundraising campaign, July 25, 2020. (Aziz Ladha photo)Tavisha Kochhar sews masks for her fundraising campaign, July 25, 2020. (Aziz Ladha photo)
Masks made by Tavisha Kochhar. (Contributed photo)Masks made by Tavisha Kochhar. (Contributed photo)
A group of South Surrey high-school students and recent graduates joined to raise money for local health-care workers. (Contributed photo)A group of South Surrey high-school students and recent graduates joined to raise money for local health-care workers. (Contributed photo)
(Contributed photo)(Contributed photo)
Signage outside Surrey Memorial Hospital, April 14, 2020. (Jon Healy photo)Signage outside Surrey Memorial Hospital, April 14, 2020. (Jon Healy photo)
The Ozel family shopping during the early stages of the pandemic, March 12, 2020. (Neda Ozel photo)The Ozel family shopping during the early stages of the pandemic, March 12, 2020. (Neda Ozel photo)

A call for help documenting the pandemic’s impact in Surrey communities prompted the submission of more than 300 items for Surrey Archives’ COVID-19 Collection.

Archives officials invited submissions a year ago. To date, hundreds of photographs and a sampling of videos, documents and audio files have been received.

“Items in this collection highlight the remarkable ingenuity, resilience, and spirit within Surrey,” archivist Chelsea Bailey said in a news release issued Friday.

Submissions reflect “a range of lived experiences” from grassroots community fundraising movements, schools, non-profit organizations, and private citizens and businesses, including photographs of positive messages throughout Surrey from April-June 2020; audio recordings of people discussing their everyday lives and feelings last year; written letters from parents to their young children explaining the need to stay safe; photos of birthday parties held in isolation; a video created by a local school sending messages of support to students and staff; and a recording of the virtual Surrey Pride 2020 event.

READ MORE: ‘Thank You’ sign campaign aims to raise money for Surrey, Peace Arch hospitals

“Even though we are still in the midst of it, the COVID-19 pandemic is an historic event, dramatically altering day-to-day life,” said Bailey, noting that the effects of the pandemic will be the subject of future documentaries, films, research articles, novels and more.

“The Archives must be proactive to ensure local experiences of this extraordinary time will not be forgotten generations from now.”

To submit a photo, video, letter or other items for the Surrey Archives COVID-19 Collection, email or call 604-502-6459.
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