We’ve had our home on Queen West in Toronto for the almost nine years we’ve been going, and until COVID hit, we haven’t seen this amount of people living on the streets ever, and it’s genuinely unsettling.
Now it’s one thing to sleep under the stars in summer or even in a tent through the fall, but as the temperature drops, the ground freezes and winter start to arrive, the situation for the homeless becomes dier.
Honestly, if I had the money, I would build homes for all the people who don’t have one, but, since I don’t, the next best thing is to use the resources I do have to supply as many people living on the streets with the things they need to stay warm, keep clean, and help to give them a fighting chance this winter.
What can we do?
So, to start I asked my partner and mum if they would like to donate money or buy some supplies to make 25 “Winter Care Packs”, I also reached out to a few PR agencies and brands to see if they could help.
To my delight, my family and I were able to purchase 25 toques, 25 scarves, 25 pairs of socks, 25 pairs of longjohns, and some of my fave brands sent up some much-needed supplies to add to the packs.
Yardley London sent us 25 bars of their excellent Oatmeal & Almond soap, which helps soothe dry, irritated skin, while also working to keep you clean and smelling fresh.
Carry Clean sent us 25 travel toothbrush sets, which made our day, and we know will make the day of someone whos in need. Being clean, which includes brushing your teeth, is not only key in feeling good, it’s necessary for proper oral health.
Lypsyl was kind enough to send 25 lip moisturising sticks, and as we know, winter can be hard on the old kissers, so, we all need a little help fending off the elements, which is sure to be a great addition to our packs.
So, each pack includes one toque, scarf, sweater, or blanket, a pair of socks, longjohns, Carry Clean toothbrush set, Lypsyl, and a bar of Yardley soap, and we have 25 to start, and we hit the streets Saturday, December 12th to kick off our program.
The video of us delivering the winter care packs in Trinity Bellwoods Park in Toronto:
@themaleaddictI was truly blessed to be saved by the love of my family and friends, but some just aren’t that lucky 💜♬ Worship Instrumental – Instrumental – Adrian Jonathan
It was a very emotional day for me, on one side I was so happy to help, on the other, talking with those who are struggling and living on the streets was very emotional, as it truly is heartbreaking to see.
What can you do?
Now, here’s where you come in. I’ve started a GoFundMe to help continue this program all through the winter, and my next goal is to make 50 more care packs and then 25 more and so on, right through the winter and into the spring.
If you would like to help, donations can be made to the GoFundMe page. All money raised will be used to buy products that will be personally purchased, put together and delivered by myself and my team.
We are halfway through our goal to make 50 more bags as of December 17th, 2020!
See the full details below:
Hello, my name is Mark Munroe, and I am the EIC of ADDICTED Magazine based in Toronto, ON, Canada. If you know anything about my story, you know I’ve struggled with addiction and was even homeless at one point.
As COVID has continued and the year has gone on, we’ve seen more and more people living on the streets, and now, all of our parks are full of people living in tents, and as the winter comes, it’s going to be a very challenging time. So I’m asking for donations from brands, media partners and from you!
Our goal is to make winter packs for as many homeless people as we can.
With 100% of the money raised, we (My team and I) will buy blankets, toques, scarves, gift cards (for Tims, Subways, all food-related) and toiletries (sanitiser, soap, etc.).
We will collect the funds, buy the much-needed supplies, make up the packs, and hand-deliver them ourselves while following COVID procedures and guidelines.
If you can help in any way, I would be touched, and I know it will make a huge difference this winter. Thank You.
Special thanks to the Team at Brill Communications for helping to facilitate products from our winter care packs.
The fine print:
We will document the process for transparency, but will not be showing any homeless people in the process without permission.
We will keep and publish the receipts after the process. Products have been gifted to ADDICTED for donation for the above-mentioned program.