The Salvation Army is proud to partner with The Push for Change in supporting a summer “warm up” training trek which will take place between Calgary to Vancouver.
Joe Roberts was formerly homeless inVancouver’s Downtown Eastside and, with the help of The Salvation Army along the way, is now a successful business man. He created The Push for Change to raise money and awareness for homeless youth at risk.
The visual image is one that sees the cart as a symbol that will turn heads. Roberts is planning to push a shopping cart across Canada in 2013 to build awareness and support for homeless youth in Canada. He and business partner Dr. Sean Richardson, a sport psychologist, are hoping to create a call to action to get people involved and inspired. “What if we could catch them before they graduate to the worst postal code in Canada?” he noted.
Roberts shares he is well aware of the issues of homelessness having spent seven years on the streets of Vancouver’s East end as a young man. Those years were spawned by drug use at a young age. “My story is that I lost sight of the idea of how much of an extraordinary person I could be,” he explained. After reaching rock bottom he made a call for help and went to rehab.
The idea is for communities and individuals to help push the cart with him, generating funds to support existing services and resources. “If all we do is create awareness then we would have failed as a project,” he said. “Engagement is the key, if we can get enough people wrapped around this and they get their hearts in it we can make a real impact.”
It is incredibly encouraging to see Joe Roberts commitment to pushing a shopping cart across Canada and for the message that he stands behind. Together, we can bring awareness and energy to this socially relevant issue.