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

Students bring real issues to Oak Bay High mock election

‘Humans are an endangered species, no-one seems to realize that’

Popular food truck to open restaurant on Oak Bay Avenue

Dead Beetz Burgers adds brick-and-mortar restaurant

Access: A day in the life using a wheelchair in Victoria

Black Press Media teamed up with the Victoria Disability Resource Centre to learn about barriers

CRD aims to reduce solid waste going to Hartland Landfill by a third by 2030

District launches public engagement campaign for waste reduction strategies

Victoria retirement community celebrates 403 years of life

Four women over 100 celebrate at The Wellesley

VIDEO: Explosion, fire sends woman running from Saanich home

Heavy smoke in the area, crews on scene

Zantac, the over-the-counter heartburn drug, pulled in Canada, U.S.

Health Canada also investigates possible carcinogen in some ranitidine drugs

B.C. public safety minister says cannabis edibles not in stores til January

Mike Farnworth says he wants regional issues considered when it comes to licensing

POLL: Do you think the day of the federal election should be a statutory holiday?

Increasing voter turnout has long been a goal of officials across the… Continue reading

Greta Thunberg calls for climate action in Alberta, but doesn’t talk oilsands

Swedish teen was met with some oil and gas industry supporters who came in a truck convoy

Scheer denies spreading ‘misinformation’ in predicting unannounced Liberal taxes

Conservative leader had claimed that a potential NDP-Liberal coalition could lead to a hike in GST

Chilliwack man pleads guilty in crash that killed pregnant woman

Frank Tessman charged under Motor Vehicle Act for accident that killed Kelowna school teacher

Kawhi Leonard, former Toronto Raptor, welcomed back to Vancouver at pre-season game

Fans go wild at pre-season game between L.A. Clippers and Dallas Mavericks at Rogers Arena

Greens and NDP go head to head on West Coast; Scheer takes fight to Bernier

Trudeau turns focus to key ridings outside Toronto after two days in Quebec

Most Read