Soldiers out offering help to homeless veterans in Calgary

A group of Canadian veterans were out on the street in Calgary on Saturday, part of a larger movement to help homeless veterans in nearly two dozen cities across the country.

The Tour of Duty Walk is an initiative from the VETS Canada group, aimed at raising awareness about former soldiers who are now living on the street.

Steve Gillis, with VETS Canada, says they’ve helped a lot of people so far nationwide.

“We’ve helped about 3,000 veterans since the program started in 2014. This May alone we helped 250 veterans. The awareness is growing and people are starting to learn that we’re there to help out.”

On Saturday, they went out on the street and along the banks of the Bow River to make with the city’s homeless with the hopes of finding more veterans in need of assistance.

Gillis says a partnership with Calgary’s Drop-In Centre is a big help in their work.

“The relationship with the DI has been something that’s been in place for the past three years and we’ve been coming to this area to start the walk off. That relationship is growing and I think the word is getting out there because I heard that the DI Centre is now screening for veterans as they arrive, which is fantastic news.”

He says that his group’s goal is to help those who signed up to protect peace and Canada.

“We want to help our heroes. They signed up to protect our country and it’s our turn to help them. We want to get them off the street, we want to get them stabilized and we want to see them healthy.”

This is the third year that the group has held their walk.

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