For what’s likely the first time in its history, Royal Canadian Legion Branch 91 in Langford will be able to hand out custom-made greeting cards – thanks to a high school student.
The branch recently unveiled its new greeting card design, which came as a result of a T-shirt logo contest the branch held in the spring and open to local students.
“Wendy Tran from Belmont Secondary ended up the winner of that contest, but with the legion moving into renovation mode, the T-shirt development has been put on hiatus,” said Gerry Brennan, the branch’s youth coordinator. “About two months ago, there was talk about greeting cards because we use them quite often for thank-yous and get well soons, so I said we have a logo for the T-shirt, why don’t we take advantage of that.”
Brennan said the decision was unanimous that the branch should use Tran’s winning logo – which depicts a soldier’s helmet and boots with the phrase “lest we forget” and “Branch 91” on it along with the legion’s poppy logo – for the new greeting card. This gave birth to a customized replacement to the store-bought cards the branch had been using.
As thanks for allowing her design to be used beyond the T-shirt, Tran was presented with the first-ever custom card featuring her design.
“I think it is going to have a tremendously positive impact when people who get these cards recognize that it is a student’s artwork, and still has that recognition of veterans and the sacrifices they have made,” Brennan said.
The legion has always felt it is important to have strong relationships with local schools and youth, Brennan said, and to have them engaged with the legion’s mission of supporting veterans and highlighting the importance of remembrance. Having local youth design a logo was a perfect marriage of those goals.
For now, the card is reserved for legion use, and the only way to get one is to be given one by the legion. Brennan did say, however, the branch always has a need to raise funds, so there is a possibility the cards could become available through some other means at some point in the future.