Lynn Valley, can you help warm North Van's homeless?

December 3, 2017

From the Front Porch of LynnValleyLife

Last year we were delighted to make the acquaintance of North Van RCMP Cpl. Randy Wong and his wife Sahar Manochehri, who spend many of their off-hours assembling and delivering “care packages” to those who live rough on our streets.

Homeless

As you will recall from our blog post, Randy provides the kits to many first responders, who are in turn glad to have something on hand to offer the cold folks they meet on their rounds in wet winter weather. Police officers and others have donated useful items and their own cash to help ensure that as  many North Vancouver residents as need them have the opportunity to receive some help keeping warm and dry.

Last year we asked Randy and Sahar if we could get Lynn Valley residents involved in donating requested items for the kits, and you stepped forward in a most neighbourly fashion indeed. We were delighted (but not at all surprised!) Along with the various donations were real labours of love, including handknit toques in a range of colours.

We recently spoke with Sahar and Randy and are happy to be partnering up for another winter season. LynnValleyLife offices will be open to your donations of the requested items on their list, from now until a date to be determined after Christmas. Our office is open 9 to 5, Monday through Friday, or if a weekend drop-off is preferred you can bring your donation to the drop box at St. Clement’s Anglican Church, 3400 Institute Rd. (across Lynn Valley Park), Sundays until 1 p.m.

As you’ll see on their website, requested items are as follows. Custom kits are made for men and for women. Please draw from the list and do not donate coats or other miscellaneous items that the kits cannot accommodate.

  • Adult sized winter wool-blend or fleece knitted gloves (they stretch and fit a majority of hand sizes)
  • Adult sized winter wool-blend or fleece  toque (they stretch and fit a majority of head sizes)
  • Wool or winter socks (men’s sizes 9-11, women’s one size fits all).
  • Plastic vinyl rain ponchos (stronger and lasts longer).
  • Hand warmer packets.
  • Ziplock bags (10 inches x 11 inches).

As noted on the Warming the Homeless website, ‘We request that new items are purchased to complete our packages. We want the homeless to feel that they are worthy of new clothing and not old, used and discarded clothing items.” Sahar has told us at LynnValleyLife that she doesn’t wish to sound ungrateful by being quite specific about their requests; she just doesn’t want people to go to the expense and effort of donating something that may not be able to be put to use.

Wood blend blankets (80 per cent wool, 20 per cent polyester) have also been found to be very helpful to those on the street. She notes that moving blankets, which the couple launder at their own expense prior to distributing, fit the need well and welcomes contact from anyone in the moving industry who might have some to donate.

Lynn Valley, we hope that despite the busy-ness and demands of December you can find time to participate in this cause, which directly helps warm people living life in the streets of North Vancouver. Thank you, and may you enjoy all the wonders of Advent and Christmas to come!