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- by Emmy McKirgan
Angels in Action has been doing outreach for the past three years. Randy Cotterhill is the founder of the organization, and his right-hand man is Darrin Bresselaar. Both are recovering addicts who live at the Dream Center. In his first year, Randy spent over $20,000 of his own money to provide the necessities for the homeless in Calgary. They have numerous volunteers, some of whom are recovering addicts and even currently homeless. Contact the organization to see how you can help.
Check out the rest of the posts in this 3 part series, be sure to like and follow Angels in Action!
Currently, Angels in Action rely on private donations. They receive various items, including fresh produce and dairy. When they have a significant donation like this one, they have a “throwdown,” where they set up at the Uptown Bottle Depot and feed the homeless, whom Randy and Darrin refer to as “friends.” They provide a meal and any other needed supplies such as clothing: including socks, undergarments, jackets and shoes.
Besides the “throwdowns” they host at the Uptown Bottle Depot. Randy and Darrin drive around in their van four to five days a week to see who they can assist. They will pull over and help as needed. That may look like providing a warm bowl of soup or food or clothing. Or simply a place to warm up, especially on freezing cold Calgary nights.
They have a “soup kitchen” on wheels. Both Randy and Darrin make the soup – but after a soup cook-off, the decision was: Darrin has the best “soup”, aka “goulash”, that he makes from whatever food donations they have received.
The “friends” know they will find hot soup to warm their bodies and other nourishing food when the van is around. One of these friends is “Angel,” who relies on them. However, it’s not a one-sided friendship. Angel is feisty and won’t put up with any nonsense. She lets the boys know what is needed and what is not. The story of how she became homeless needs to be told. She speaks of feelings of isolation, being judged and labelled. Yet most people don’t take the time to listen.
Angel isn’t the only one with a story. Each person has a story to share about how they became homeless. So many factors are involved that lead a person to live on the streets; this turn in life is often the result of complex and layered reasons.
Keep on the lookout for the next two parts of this series to hear more about Angels in Action.
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