On Saturday homeless lent a helping hand to other homeless in Peterborough.
A group of volunteers from Durham Dignity for the Homeless paid a visit to Victoria Park and provided lunch, clothing and other goods to those camping out in tents.
It’s all part of the “Nourish to Flourish Tour” and Peterborough is the first stop.
“Saturdays and Sundays, the One Roof doesn’t have lunch or anything or a lot of food on the weekend, so this is great, like pizza, man, I can’t believe it’s pizza,” said a smiling PJ Mcarthur, who was camping out at Victoria Park.
Raymond Bond started the grassroots organization after experiencing homelessness himself about 7 years ago.
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Bond said he realized how little homeless people receive, so now he want’s to give back, raise awareness and make a difference in people’s lives.
“I was very disappointed in what I saw when I was homeless. I think we can be picking people up a lot quicker,” said Bond.
“You know drugs wasn’t my issue; for some people it is, but you know we need to be picking people up a lot quicker.”
Bond says it’s this kind of care that has made a difference in Oshawa’s homeless community.
He has been helping other homeless people over the year and said he noticed a significant difference in their overall health.
“The folks that we’ve been dealing with for the last year, they’re looking a lot healthier, replenished, more energy,” said Bond.
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Reachel Lawrenson has joined Bond to help on the humanitarian tour. She has been homeless for about two months and knows just how quickly things can slip, but more importantly how a little help can go a long way.
“I’m homeless myself out in Oshawa and just wanted to see what’s going on out here in Peterborough, you know differences, how their lives have been affected,” said Lawrenson.
“There’s nowhere near as much help given that’s needed for these people and they’re not all just addicts with no hopes or dreams, they were people with families that have lost them.”
Corporate sponsors and donations make the Nourish to Flourish Tour possible.
Quinty West is the next stop on the tour. That community has also seen a growing homelessness problem.
“Were hoping it gains traction and hopefully we can raise some awareness,” said Bond.
If you would like to contribute your time or donations, visit the Durham Dignity for the Homeless Facebook page.