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Last April, I spent a less-than-warm night (frigid is more like it) sleeping on the streets of Toronto, to help raise awareness and funds for Covenant House, Canada’s largest shelter for young people.
It wasn’t easy – I passed the night tossing and turning and not really getting any sleep at all. When they “woke us up” at 5:00am, I got to pack up my sleeping back and head home to the sanctuary of my bed. And honestly? Getting into that bed never felt so good, and I’d never felt so blessed, probably in my entire 30 years.
But here’s the thing. It doesn’t matter that it wasn’t “easy” for me (or the other young professionals who I slept out with), because there are young people throughout Toronto – and Canada – who regularly call the streets their sleeping quarters.
Covenant House, which is filled with young people ages 16-25 who are homeless for a variety of reasons beyond their control, makes it so that they don’t have to. I saw, first-hand, how this facility in downtown Toronto works tirelessly, 24/7, 365 days a year, to support young people in need from across Canada. And CH doesn’t just provide beds. It offers mental health support, an on-site medical clinic, and a variety of life skills programming.
This means that a generation of youth who were not dealt the best hand, whose paths might otherwise be volatile and uncertain, can receive the care they require to rise above hardships and create better lives for themselves.
We’re fortunate, in Toronto (and Canada), to have a place like Covenant House that works around the clock to support our youth in need. So I want to thank all of you who donated last year, and hope you’ll do the same this year, with the knowledge that your donations will be going to support the vital work of Covenant House, and the services and hope that it provides, day in and day out.
If you call Toronto (or Canada…) “home”, I hope you’ll see the value in supporting an initiative like this one. My goal this year is to raise $2,000. Your generous contributions, of any size, will help me to reach this goal. Just visit the link below, and click on the green “DONATE NOW” button on the right-hand side of the page.
Thank you, in advance, for your donation, from myself and the youth who call Covenant House ‘home’.