Monday, June 26, 2017

The Day of the Homeless 2010

Member of Good Neighbours' Club against brick

Dignitaries mingled with the homeless at The Second Annual Day of the Homeless  at the Good Neighbours’ Club at Jarvis and Shuter. The Day of the Homeless honours those who have died on the streets, and takes place on or around the anniversary of the death of Good Neighbours’ Club member Paul Croutch, the former journalist who died after being beaten by intoxicated soldiers from a nearby armoury in August, 2005.

This year, the event featured a photo exhibit of the men taken by acclaimed photo journalist Rita Leistner (Time, Newsweek, Rolling Stone, Vanity Fair) and an exhibit called Expressions of Hope and Despair, featuring photos of life on the streets by club members themselves (all homeless or marginally housed).

Dignitaries included the Club’s Patron, The Honourable David Onley, the Lieutenant Governor of Ontario and Sheldon Levy, the President of Ryerson University.  It was hosted by Francis D’Souza (event host), Citytv – CityNews Anchor.

The Good Neighbours’ Club is a Toronto charity dedicated to the homeless or marginally-housed man who is 50+ and trying to find his way back to a normal life.  By the time he is 50, a homeless man is aged well beyond his years.  He is also vulnerable to attack by younger men.  No other Toronto charity is so uniquely equipped to deal with the daytime needs of the homeless man over 50.

Founded in 1933 and located at Jarvis and Shuter, The Good Neighbours’ Club is a day centre for homeless and under-housed men who are 50 and over.  Its members have faced the despair of downsizing or have lost everything due to illness, addiction, poor choices or bad luck.  They receive new, donated clothes and have access to mail services, showers, laundry facilities, hot meals, phones, televisions, games, computers, a weekly medical clinic staffed by Street Health nurses, a safe place to lock up valuables…and compassion.  The club also provides final arrangements for members whose bodies would otherwise go unclaimed.

Funded largely by the United Way of Greater Toronto, the Ontario Ministry of Health and the City of Toronto, The Good Neighbours’ Club is assisted by the Daily Bread Food Bank, Second Harvest, Whole Foods Market and Torontonians who realize that these men could be their fathers, their brothers, their sons or even themselves. For more information about The Good Neighbours’ Club please visit www.goodneighboursclub.org.

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