What does the shelter need?
Please scroll down to read the story of Edward and Robert, former residents of the Roehampton Shelter
Donations needed at the Roehampton shelter – updated January, 2022
- Decor items (especially plastic vases and artificial flowers)
- Potted Plants
- Dog food (any kind)
- Single serving snacks (juice, crackers, pop, Halls, individual tea/coffee/honey, candy, chips)
- Socks (new)
- Boots and casual shoes
- Chapstick (new)
- Board games, puzzles, playing cards, crosswords, magazines (new and old), word searches, crayons/markers with pads,
- Old cell phones, tablets, cameras
- Small table clocks
- Small kettles
- Toiletries (travel size)
- Adult diapers
For welcome baskets as residents move into their own homes. These items may be new or gently used:
- Spatulas, tongs, can openers, spatulas, whisk, soup ladles
- Measuring cups and spoons
- Cutting boards
- Mixing bowls, strainers
- Casserole dish
- Laundry baskets
- Queen fitted sheets
- Tea towels
These items need to be new:
- Paper towel
- Toilet paper
- Tea towels
- Cleaning supplies
Edward’s Roehampton Residence Story
I would like to take this time to thank the amazing citizens of Toronto and the city of Toronto gov. especially its housing/shelter Dept. and the entire staff that work at the Roehampton shelter on Mt Pleasant Road for all their hard work, their generosity, dedication and most of all for their compassion. It takes a special kind of person with a lot of patience and people skills and most importantly they must have an open mind to work in a place like this. You must have an open-ear and show compassion and I mean heartfelt compassion which each and every employee shows sincerely on a daily basis. From the kitchen help, from security to the office personal to house cleaning and managers…just amazing! I want to send out a special word of gratitude to the nursing staff…fabulous job ladies! and last but not least the two councillors that work day in and day out meeting with clients from all over the world from every race that hear endless stories of despair and sorrow and hardship drug addiction abandonment and abuse. They have a difficult job but they do their job with integrity and devotion and I applaud them both. If it weren’t for counsellors Leroy Miller and his assistant Jason I can honestly say without a doubt and a tear in my eye I wouldn’t be alive today. The Roehampton shelter literally has saved my life. Leroy and Jason along with other staff members go above and beyond working with multiple clients on a daily basis desperately fighting trying to get their lives back on the right track. In some cases saving lives. As they saved mine.
My story on how I ended up at the Roehampton homeless shelter is complicated but I’ll make it as short as possible I ended up here deported from the USA after residing there for 22 and 1/2 years. I owned my own business for almost 20 years, a very successful business. I employed over a hundred American citizens, paid my taxes and had a family, 6 yr old son. Law-abiding upstanding citizen and a successful legit business owner.
The community looked up to me and I was highly respected. and I devoted my blood, sweat and tears to the USA. only to be deported by the US government / ice for not renewing my Visa for 17 years. This happened in the middle of a nasty divorce and custody battle. That’s another story, lol. I was dropped off in a major city that I had never been to. A huge city, I was lost and scared. With nothing but the clothes on my back and not a penny to my name Not knowing a single person. Not knowing where to go or what to do next. I just spent 6 months in Trump’s Federal illegal alien immigration prison system in Eloy, AZ. Inhumane and that’s keeping it modest. Google it please. So ICE flew me to Buffalo, NY from Arizona then drove me across the border in Niagara Falls only to be detained once again and ordered to quarantine but with nowhere near the conditions I was living in. I thought about ending my life while in quarantine. But I couldn’t as I kept thinking of my son. After 14 days in quarantine I was transferred to the Roehampton hotel where I was contemplating suicide for the first 2 weeks till I met Leroy and his staff. That was the game changer. Ending up at the Roehampton was an eye opener for me as I’ve never been homeless. Slowly talking with staff Leroy other staff members including some security staff that I hold very close to my heart
I realized my life was not over just yet. This homeless shelter actually saved my life as crazy as that sounds! I’ve been there since August. I’ve met hundreds of people in this beautiful city of Toronto. And many of them shelter residents. I just have to say from the bottom of my heart I am so pleased and grateful to be home! And I will never take my homeland birth place namely Canada for granted again. Toronto is so friendly, generous and welcoming. I forgot how great our country really is. I smile when I walk down the street and notice people from every ethnicity/every race. Police are so friendly and respectful. No outrageous noticeable political diversity or rhetoric. I had forgotten how great our nation was. And I have to admit I’m somewhat ashamed and embarrassed. only for the fact I was absent so long. I will never abandon my amazing country again and I would like to apologize to each and everyone of my fellow citizens for being absent so long. I’ve only been back a little over 3 months but in that time the city and its people have found a place in my heart. I love Toronto and its people. God bless my country people I’m home and I’m here to stay.
Robert’s Roehampton Residence story
Robert became homeless about a year and a half ago. Before that, he had been living in a rooming house for many years. However, it was not legally licensed. Inspectors paid the home a visit and found that it was full of knob and tube wiring. This led to a renovation of the boarding house, and Robert had to leave. This became a year of living on the streets. During that time, Robert used the City of Toronto’s drop-in system occasionally, such as on cold nights. Eventually, he got tired of living on the street, and he asked for a spot in a shelter. He was assigned a room in the Roehampton Residence.
Robert said that he really likes the staff, and they were very helpful. He didn’t enjoy the company of his fellow residents as much, since he never knew who he was going to sharing his room with. But the staff were eager to help him find housing. He needed to be able to prove that he had been experiencing homelessness for six months. His case worker at the shelter called the drop-in centres which he had visited, and was able to prove his claim was accurate. She helped him with the paperwork, getting his taxes filed, and finding a place.
Recently, Robert moved into an apartment. He was given a welcome basket prepared by one of our churches, which he says he uses every day. He stated that the basket helped so much, since he didn’t have many household effects to bring with him into his empty apartment. He received furniture from the Furniture Bank organization. He’s grateful to be off the street, and living on his own, thanks to help from the shelter’s staff, and churches like ours.