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This year’s Canadian Alliance to End Homelessness Conference was held in Montreal. As I always do when traveling, I grabbed some socks and took to the streets. I happened to be walking through Montreal’s China Town and noticed a few aboriginal men sitting next to a pile of cardboard. I offered some new socks and instant friendships were made.

11012528_10153681130097246_3274273697030008749_nMark and another aboriginal man named Donald insisted I follow them to a local aboriginal shelter close by. Both men were so nice I followed, but being honest, I do admit having second thoughts when going down a dark alley in a strange city.

The experience was wonderful. I was able to hook up a bunch of folks with new socks, and the staff of the shelter invited me inside for a tour. After traveling to 24 cities in Canada in 2011, I genuinely love and respect the aboriginal culture.

Mark says he has been homeless off and on for 40 years now. He shares about how putting cardboard on the ground keep the cold from getting in your bones.

Mark seems like he is down on life. Homelessness is far from easy. Like many people on the streets, Mark is trying to forget past abuse and his current situation by drinking. Although negative in this interview I found Mark to be an extremely kind and helpful person. I cannot imagine the pain he has gone through, which is probably why he only wished to have his life back.

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