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Woman who was once down on her luck gives back to Surrey neighbourhood

It’s known as a problem part of Surrey, but one woman is doing her part to give Whalley a helping hand, and she’s celebrating a major milestone this year.

Maryanne Connor started ‘Night Shift Ministries’ 10 years ago, operating a mobile soup kitchen for street people.

A decade later her volunteering service also offers counselling and clothing services for the homeless.

Donations are about 20 per cent down this year, but the need is still great, so Connor is racing to fundraise $100,000 just to break even.

“It’s only through spending with people on the street I’ve been able to determine that people are real, that we all make mistakes, that we all have a story, we all have a history, and I didn’t realize that 10 years ago,” says Connor.

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“I really took people for face value and we all wear masks, and once I got beyond the mask  and to the heart of the person, miracles started to happen.”