5 Days for the Homeless in London

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5 days for the homeless

Dylan, Daniel, Noah with Molson employees Gary Moore and Mike Butts

Took a little road trip last week to London, Ontario to visit three students from the Richard Ivey School of Business who were spending the whole week outside. The students, Dylan Haggart, Noah Goldstein and Daniel Sliwin, were participating in a national fundraising initiative called 5 Days for the Homeless - students across Canada sacrifice basic necessities to raise awareness and money for youth homelessness in their communities.

Daniel contacted Molson a few weeks ago to see if we wanted to get involved in their campaign.  We were able to contribute to their efforts with a $4,000 donation which will go directly to support Street Connection, an organization that provides referrals, guidance, support, warm meals and counseling services for street youth in London.

5 days for the homeless

Where the boys ‘lived’ for the week

Local Molson employees Mike Butts, Gary Moore and I stopped in at the University of Western’s Community Centre to see the students on their last day.  I was SO impressed! Not only were they in great spirits (I don’t know if I would be after sleeping in the snow), but they raised tons of extra funds and awareness.

I did a quick interview with Daniel about the week:

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Check out real experience stories from Dylan and Noah and the other students across Canada

Proud to play our part. Cheers.

One response to this entry

  1. Many thanks to the folks from Molson, the local employees Mike Butts and Gary Moore; the students of the Richard Ivey School of Business from the University of Western Ontario, Dylan, Daniel, Noah and Nicole.

    Living on the streets requires a tremendous arsenal of skills to survive. The skills acquired to survive are often in conflict with what is generally accepted in the community at large. Value systems are altered, family units fragmented, and the practice of illegal activity is often the only source of income. Many of our youth turn to drugs or become involved in the sex trade voluntarily or through coercion.

    Daily issues that face street youth are safety, health, clothing, food and shelter. Most have been sexually, physically and/or emotionally abused. Inconsistency and neglect touches every area of their life. Most do not have the knowledge of life skills with which to maintain living accommodations or to seek employment. As a consequence of their experiences, many have a diminished self esteem. They have lost confidence in their own abilities. Their concept of right and wrong has become distorted. Because of an image they have been given of themselves, and they have chosen to adopt, they now believe that they do not matter and so give up.

    While street youth access our drop in centre, we are on hand to listen to their needs and fears and help them realize coming off the streets is a very real possibility. We accent their abilities and encourage them to explore their options so they know they can live a much safer and securer life and can make a positive contribution to society.

    At STREET CONNECTION we teach our volunteer youth, the skills to make informed decisions about their lives and in turn our volunteers teach the youth coming through the doors the same. We work on positive peer influence. Consistency is in everything we do. We provide information about: Safer social behaviour, comprehensive life skills program, anger management, parenting skills, budget management, household management, and introduce them to self help groups.

    We must attend to our youth’s physical needs of safety, health, clothing, food and shelter, before the person will allow us to grow with them. We provide hot meals (approx. 10,000 per year), laundry and shower facilities and substance abuse workshops.

    We at STREET CONNECTION accept people exactly as they are. We welcome our kids at the centre. They need to be heard even if their choice is not ours. When they come to recognize their own strengths and abilities, the opportunity to make positive changes in their lives starts to become their reality.

    Thanks to all of you from all of us at Street Connection, a dropin centre for ‘at-risk’ homeless youth.

    Dick Rastin, Executive Director

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