Poppy Day collection back after forced year off

After being cancelled last year because of the Covid-19 lockdown restrictions, the Poppy Day street collection was back in action yesterday in Dunedin to raise money for current and former servicemen and servicewomen.

Returned and Services Association administrator Sally Turner said 14,500 poppies were available across the 29 stands in Dunedin yesterday, and about 5000 more were sent to businesses and schools.

Poppies were given in exchange for a donation, and there was no set amount the RSA hoped to raise, she said.

RSA Choir member Phil Godfrey said it was important to show respect and raise money for a good cause.

Smiling with her poppies outside the Golden Centre is Grace Slocombe (10) of Dunedin. PHOTO:...
Smiling with her poppies outside the Golden Centre is Grace Slocombe (10) of Dunedin. PHOTO: PETER MCINTOSH
Standing in the rain was nothing compared with what the service personnel would have gone through, he said.

‘‘I’m out here for an hour, so what? Think of the guys that were in the trenches.’’

It was his fourth year taking part in the collection day, and he was glad to be back after last year’s cancellation.

Giving loose change was not the only option this year as poppy stands came equipped with a QR code, which would direct people to an online donation page.

Mrs Turner said online donations were more popular than she had expected.

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