Newly homeless

Newly homeless

CARTS delivers love every Sunday night

Al Lindskoog was hooked on CARTS from his first experience offering small comforts to some of Victoria’s most vulnerable residents.

Al Lindskoog was hooked on CARTS from his first experience offering small comforts to some of Victoria’s most vulnerable residents.

Six years ago Lindskoog, now the president of the charity’s board of directors, came out on a Sunday night to offer a hot drink, warm clothing and an open ear to those living on the street.

“It just fit my heart and my personality so well,” Lindskoog said. “I took one trip out on the street and never looked back.”

Every Sunday he continues to uphold the CARTS – Christian Actions Reflecting The Spirit – mission to feed, embrace and inspire others through non-judgmental and compassionate outreach.

“I got out of my middle class upbringing and lifestyle and realized there’s a group of people, where poverty is a big issue for them, either through homelessness, limited income or addiction issues,” Lindskoog said. “I’ve been endeavouring with my heart to address the needs that are there, to see people not just as statistics, but as actual people, to become friends, to hear the stories and to discover who they are, not to view people as a project, but to build a friendship.

“It becomes very much a relationship about caring for people.”

Every Sunday afternoon some 20 volunteers, armed with four garden carts loaded with sandwiches, hot chocolate, personal health items, toques, scarves, gloves and about 150 pairs of socks, meets up at Queens Manor (710 Queens St.).

After doling out “a smile and love and conversation,” Lindskoog said, the team then heads toward Centennial Square where they offer more of the same. The route ends at the Salvation Army if there’s anything left at the end of the two-hour effort.

CARTS relies on a constant stream of donations, including cash to purchase undergarments for recipients. This year’s tighter-than-usual budget has seen CARTS hold off on purchasing the gloves they would like to give. CARTS remains open to a variety of donations, though winter gear is at the top of their wishlist this year.

More volunteers – of any faith – are also welcome to join the 10-year-old charity.

“We’re a bunch of people from a lot of different backgrounds,” he said. “Lots of people just have a heart of gold and want to express that. We want to be that place for people.”

And although the Christmas season is a wonderful time to get people thinking about giving, Lindskoog said, CARTS hopes to achieve consistency year round.

To donate, or to volunteer, either on the front line or preparing behind-the-scenes, visit cartsvictoria.ca.

nnorth@saanichnews.com

 

 

Just Posted

The City of Victoria is hoping to ring in the summer by celebrating local art and offering some distanced, live music to surprise people in parks, plazas and other public spaces. (Photo courtesy of the City of Victoria)
Live, pop-up concerts and local art being showcased in Victoria this summer

People will see surprise serenades at 16 locations throughout the summer

An example of the forest land in the Port Renfrew and Fairy Creek area of Vancouver Island is shown on May 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jen Osborne
Old-growth logging opponents launch hunger strike as arrests continue at Fairy Creek

Zain Haq says the hunger strikers will gather today at Burrard Street in downtown Vancouver

An example of the forest land in the Port Renfrew and Fairy Creek area of Vancouver Island is shown on May 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jen Osborne
Old-growth logging opponents launch hunger strike as arrests continue at Fairy Creek

Zain Haq says the hunger strikers will gather today at Burrard Street in downtown Vancouver

The 14th annual Oak Bay Young Exceptional Star (YES) awards June 3. (Christine van Reeuwyk/News Staff)
Oak Bay celebrates its Young Exceptional Stars with outdoor award ceremony

Nine young people recognized in 14th annual awards

Jada Benwell and Connor Larkey are the valedictorians of the 2021 graduating class at Parkland Secondary School. (Wolf Depner/News Staff)
Pandemic taught lessons in perseverance for North Saanich high schoolers

Parkland Secondary School to release 2021 grad ceremony video on June 25

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau participates in a plenary session at the G7 Summit in Carbis Bay, England on Friday June 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada donating 13M surplus COVID-19 vaccine doses to poor countries

Trudeau says the government will pay for 87 million shots to be distributed to poor countries

Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller is seen during a news conference, Wednesday May 19, 2021 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Indigenous child-welfare battle heads to court despite calls for Ottawa to drop cases

Feds are poised to argue against two Canadian Human Rights Tribunal rulings

The Great Ogopogo Bathtub Race has been held in Summerland as a fundraising event. Do you know which Canadian city introduced this sport? (Black Press file photo)
QUIZ: A summer’s day at the water

How much do you know about boats, lakes and water?

Two-year-old Ivy McLeod laughs while playing with Lucky the puppy outside their Chilliwack home on Thursday, June 10, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: B.C. family finds ‘perfect’ puppy with limb difference for 2-year-old Ivy

Ivy has special bond with Lucky the puppy who was also born with limb difference

A million-dollar ticket was sold to an individual in Vernon from the Lotto Max draw Friday, June 11, 2021. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lottery ticket worth $1 million sold in Vernon

One lucky individual holds one of 20 tickets worth $1 million from Friday’s Lotto Max draw

“65 years, I’ve carried the stories in my mind and live it every day,” says Jack Kruger. (Athena Bonneau)
‘Maybe this time they will listen’: Survivor shares stories from B.C. residential school

Jack Kruger, living in Syilx territory, wasn’t surprised by news of 215 children’s remains found on the grounds of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School

A logging truck carries its load down the Elaho Valley near in Squamish, B.C. in this file photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chuck Stoody
Squamish Nation calls for old-growth logging moratorium in its territory

The nation says 44% of old-growth forests in its 6,900-square kilometre territory are protected while the rest remain at risk

Flowers and cards are left at a makeshift memorial at a monument outside the former Kamloops Indian Residential School to honour the 215 children whose remains are believed to have been discovered buried near the city in Kamloops, B.C., on Monday, May 31, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
‘Pick a Sunday:’ Indigenous leaders ask Catholics to stay home, push for apology

Indigenous leaders are calling on Catholics to stand in solidarity with residential school survivors by not attending church services

Most Read