SAULT STE. MARIE -- Sault Search and Rescue volunteers are helping those at risk during the COVID-19 pandemic, in a new role.

The group has teamed up with the city of Sault Ste. Marie to deliver groceries and medicine to the community. 

"They're quite happy to have someone bring that food to them, they're in need and we're able to fulfill that need for them," said Scott Walker, Sault Search and Rescue volunteer. 

Requests for help are funnelled through the city's community hotline.

Typically, phone calls are for informational purposes. But the city has noticed an influx of calls from people asking for deliveries. 

"Any people who phone the hotline and need something delivered, then the city phones us," said Walker.

"From there, we take that and head over to collect their delivery. Primarily right now, we're delivering food." 

Hotline workers will coordinate with the St. Vincent Place food bank for the pickup. 

Without search and rescue, the city says they're not sure where they'd be. 

"Delivering items to people and getting things to people, or getting to people, that's not what we can do," said John Mangone, Manager at the Community hotline.

"That organization is really a godsend for us, because of it." 

Despite mostly delivering food, Walker says search and Rescue are prepared to take on whatever task is asked of them. 

Meanwhile, if you are in need, the city is asking the public to email them directly or call the hotline at (705) 574-1220.