The Red Deer Food Bank will receive a big donation, thanks to a T-shirt that reads, “What would Dr. Hinshaw Do?”
Ten Alberta food banks, including Red Deer’s, will each receive $2,025 after more than $20,000 was raised through online sales of the shirt featuring Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Alberta’s chief medical officer of health.
“It’s been really remarkable to see that even though people are struggling themselves, they’re finding room in their pockets to help out other Albertans who are in dire need,” said Alison Van Rosendaal, who launched the T-shirt sale a few weeks ago.
“It’s so calming and reassuring to know we’re in this together. That was certainly my sense from this. People are there for one another. We can rely on each other to get through this.”
Sales for the shirt are now closed.
The Calgary teacher said supporting food banks is important right now.
“When you look at what happens when the infrastructure we’ve come to rely on … kind of falls apart, there are certain organizations that can help fill the void,” she said.
The T-shirts were pressed by Red Deer’s 72 Clothing Company, which is run by Darcy Notland.
“I drew the T-shirt from a screenshot at 2:30 in the morning one night on impulse. I made 10 T-shirts – one for me, one for my sister and a couple for people we know,” Van Rosendaal said.
The rest of the shirts were to be auctioned off to support the food bank in Calgary.
“On the first day, there was a huge response, and I knew auctioning off three or five T-shirts was not going to be enough, so someone put me in touch with Darcy in Red Deer.”
Another batch of T-shirts isn’t expected to come in the future, she added.
“Dr. Hinshaw has been pretty explicit in saying that she didn’t want her image being used for profit, and on the third day we were selling the shirts, there was a knockoff site that was selling my shirt for profit in the states,” she said.
“I can’t imagine how many orders they were getting, but it existed, and that made me really apprehensive.
“And shortly after, there were at least a dozen knockoff sites. I didn’t intend for her image to be used that way.”