Warm Welcome: Free Printed Canadian Passport Photos For Newcomers

July 4, 2024

This July, London Drugs is celebrating the spirit of inclusivity and community that defines our nation. In a values-driven initiative, the retailer has partnered with the Institute for Canadian Citizenship (ICC) to extend a warm welcome to newcomers in Canada. Throughout the month, London Drugs is offering free printed Canadian passport photos to Canoo app users, helping new Canadians take a significant step toward establishing their roots in Canada. We chatted with Clint Mahlman, president and COO of London Drugs, to learn more. —Vita Daily

London Drugs has a strong reputation for community support and values-driven initiatives. Can you tell us what inspired the partnership with the Institute for Canadian Citizenship to offer free passport photos to Canoo app users?

Our philosophy at London Drugs is to go above and beyond the expected.  Through our store operations we have witnessed the newcomers to Canada having to navigate so many new elements.  Settling in a new city, a new province a new country has so many complexities.  London Drugs has been supporting newcomers through our stores for years.  Upon learning about the ICC’s mission to help newcomers integrate into their communities as active citizens, we recognized its alignment with London Drugs’ dedication to community engagement. Every newcomer seeks a community pharmacy and store to call their own. With our connected wellness offerings, diverse product range spanning beauty, tech, and lifestyle, along with our deep Canadian roots, we hope London Drugs will become the heartbeat of their new community.

With citizenship rates among new immigrants at an all-time low, how do you see London Drugs’ initiative helping to address some of the barriers newcomers face in becoming Canadian citizens?

Access to health care and holistic wellness is important for all citizens in Canada and by supporting newcomers in building connections with our pharmacies and stores, and the London Drugs community we hope they feel welcome and supported as they strive to create a new home. 

London Drugs is an equal opportunity employer dedicated to building an inclusive and diverse workforce. We are committed to building a company that represents a variety of backgrounds, perspectives, and skills. The more inclusive we are, the better our work will be.  Every London Drugs’ store also works hard to support the unique needs of its local communities.  This manifests itself in the form of an extensive mix of food products we feature in support of diverse dietary needs as well as global tastes. Through the Canoo App and working with the ICC, we hope we are signaling that we are excited to play an important role in helping new Canadians feel welcome and become fully engaged in their communities.    

London Drugs is known as a trusted community hub in Western Canada. How do you ensure that initiatives like this resonate with and effectively support the local communities you serve?

We are proud of how well our London Drugs store teams know their local community members and regular shoppers.  We know they will embrace this partnership, which will introduce new Canadians to their store and our full services.  We value our teams’ feedback, the feedback from our shoppers, and are responsive to showcasing new and unique items which are often recommended by our community members.  It is important that we listen and respond to their needs. 

What feedback have you received from Canoo app users or new Canadians regarding the free passport photo initiative, and how does this feedback shape future community support programs at London Drugs?

As it is just being launched, we are excited to find out how Canoo App users will respond. We launched our partnership with the ICC last year and we are very happy with the results. This year we wanted to expand the partnership to include something very meaningful – the photo that will go into your very first Canadian passport. I can’t imagine anything more meaningful as a new Canadian. 


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