(Photo by Jay Wallace Images)

With most business shut down, employees either laid off or working from home, and the country – and indeed the world – encountering an unprecedented period of self isolation and social distancing, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed.

Although the global COVID-19 pandemic has led to a time of uncertainty and anxiety, one  message rings clear: We’re all in this together.

In Victoria, mixed with stories of desperation are those of heartwarming hope and positivity, of people helping their loved ones and their neighbours survive this outbreak.

We featured one such extraordinary story earlier, in which two local businesses are combining their efforts and resources to provide free hand sanitizers to those working on the front lines to curb the spread of novel coronavirus.

But they’re not the only ones.

Despite hardships faced by local businesses having to shut down their physical storefronts in compliance with the provincial health order, many are choosing to keep going any way they can.

In doing so, these workers are providing services that we all crave, from take out food to grocery deliveries to at-home workouts.

Without further ado, here’s a list of Greater Victoria businesses stepping up to the plate in their fight against COVID-19:

Food/beverage businesses offering special delivery/take-out options:

  • The Bikery is delivering staples of bread and pasta throughout Victoria. They originally sold only Pretzels but have since expanded the menu to include bread and pasta.
  • Empire Donuts will be waiving their delivery fee, and lowering my minimum orders to $15 for delivery. They will also be taking phone orders for delivery and pick ups and you will be able to prepay with your credit card as well.
  • Whistle Buoy – need to stock up on your beer supply? Whistle Buoy has started offering home delivery in Greater Victoria.
  • Category 12 Brewing is also doing delivery on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays – you can order online!
  • VI Brewing has hopped on the delivery train too, offering FREE local delivery with a minimum order of 24 cans.
  • Roast Victoria is offering up THE GOOD DEED CHICKEN. It is a local all natural roasted chicken and we have reduced the cost to $10. They want to make sure there is good food on every table. Chickens available for pickup from 1 p.m. – 3 p.m.
  • Ruth & Dean: They are now serving take home-prepared meals and prep for your family. They’re offering their most popular pasta sauces and what they’ve crowned our Isolation Cake. Call to place your order: 250-590-2780 They will also run your order out to you for contactless pickup.  If, you are ordering an Isolation Cake, please allow for 24 to bake and decorate.
  • Berryman Farms is offering online ordering and delivery to people’s homes! Delivering 7 days a week now.
  • Crooked Goose Bistro is still open for pick up between 11 a.m. and 6 p.m. daily and they’re offering 25% off on food items.
  • Fernwood Coffee / The Parsonage Café no longer has any indoor service and is only serving take out from their window. Hours have been reduced to 7 a.m. – 3 pm.
  • Fern Café has fully over switched over to window service and is offering touchless payment options only.
  • Cold Comfort Ice Cream has switched to walk/cycle/drive thru service only at the no-touch ice cream window.
  • Sun Wah Chinese Restaurant is open for takeout and delivery.
  • Jones Bar B Que remains open but all restaurant seating is now outside, and they are offering take out options.
  • Cook & Pan Polish Deli will remain open, Monday – Friday 9 – 5 p.m. and Saturday – Sunday 10 – 3 p.m. for online orders for either pickup or delivery. Patrons can order hot meals via UberEats, DoorDash, or by calling the shop directly at 250 385 5509.
  • Foo Asian Street Food is offering pick-up at their take out window. Simply call 250-383-3111 to place an order.
  • Discovery Coffee is offering local pick-up of freshly roasted beans from their roastery in Rock Bay! Patrons can place an order by emailing roastery@discoverycoffee.com.
  • Dutch Bakery is accepting orders over the phone (250-385-1012) and by email (hello@thedutchbakery.com). They’re offering a 25% discount on all handmade Easter chocolates and complimentary delivery for all orders over $75.00.
  • Nohra Thai Restaurant is open for take-out and delivery services from 11am-9pm Tues-Sat. Orders can be placed and paid for in advance over the phone. (250)595-7868.
  • Lighthouse Brewing Company will be offering a delivery service Wednesday through Sunday between 4pm to 8pm. With a 6pm cutoff time for same day delivery service.
  • The Roundhouse Cafe is practising social distancing and has a large patio for outside seating. Organic, fair trade and air roasted coffee.
  • Singing Bowl Granola is doing doorstep deliveries and no contact collection of their locally made granola. 10% of all sales this month is going to the Victoria Women’s Transition House.
  • Phillips Brewery  is also offering drive up order. You honk twice, place your order, they put it in your trunk and you pay by tap. Home delivery service running Wednesday – Sunday between 4 p.m. – 8 p.m. Phone in your order to 250 380 1912.
  • Sushi Matsuri in James Bay is offerig Take-Out in our own paper bag. You can order by phone 250-590-8110 or Sushi Matsuri Facebook Messenger.
  • Beagle Pub is offering take out orders over the phone. Place an order at 250 382 3301
  • Saltchuck Pie Company is open for business for both take out and dine in, but they’re monitoring social distancing.

Other retail businesses offering delivery/pick-up options:

  • Munro Books offers online shopping and $5 flat rate delivery anywhere in BC!
  • Russell Books is still providing great books to our community through a contact-free pick up window. Please phone 250-361-4447 or e-mail request@russellbooks.com for more information. They will also continue our shipping service and can offer free shipping on orders over $50 to most places in North America (on orders placed over the phone or on theirwebsite).
  • Get Joni delivers period products with free shipping, and for every item purchased, they donate the same item.
  • Growlies for Pets is offering prepaid deliveries and curbside pickup. They don’t offer online ordering yet but do have an online catalog – just give them a call: 250-391-4475.
  • Pets West is taking orders by phone (call 250-744-1779 or text 236-882-4830) and email (pets@petswest.ca) for pickup and delivery orders.
  • Bellies in Bloom has dropped their threshold for free shipping to $100 for Victoria/Saanich/West Shore customers, is offering a curbside pickup option for residents of southern Vancouver Island, and still offers one-on-one assistance including for bra fittings. Appointments can be set by email.
  • Doggie Dogster works in a self contained shed, fully Equipped with the finest shampoo and conditioners. No in store action. Outside meet. Between each groom, fully wiped down and sanitized!
  • Kharma Salon is still selling retail while our shops are closed! Contact them through social media for more info!

Grocery/retail stores with senior/vulnerable community friendly hours:

  • Quality Foods is open two hours early each day (7 a.m. – 9 a.m.) before the general public
  • Country Grocer will be open one hour early each day (7 a.m. – 8 a.m.) before the general public
  • Shoppers Drug Mart had dedicated their first opening hour of each day or seniors and vulnerable community members to do their shopping – check their website for specific store hours

Fitness centres offering online workouts:

  • Annex Fitness is doing Live Instagram workout sessions led by an Annex leader on Monday – Friday at 7:00 a.m. and 5:30 p.m., and Saturday and Sundays at 9:00 a.m., approximately 30-35 mins each
  • Yoga Lab will be doing live online classes that will feature theur dedicated faculty members demonstrating and cueing a 60 minute practice which will vary according to the schedule (roots, align flow, yin, slow flow, core flow)
  • Fitness Academy is offering FREE at home workouts each day on their Instagram page
  • Pacific Ninja Gym is doing live Facebook workouts that are very simple and use your body weight, and last around an hour.
  • Forge Fitness posting daily free at home workouts, no equipment needed. Lots to try: boxing/kickboxing, HIIT, Core, yoga, etc.

Household Services

  • FortisBC will be waiving our late payment fees. If customers have questions, please call us at 1-866-436-7847 for electricity and 1-888-224-2710 for natural gas

As the situation surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic evolves, more and more companies have been changing their policies and the way they conduct business.

We will be updating this list regularly to reflect these changes.

If you know any businesses not mentioned this list, let us know in the comment section below!