On Louis Riel day many people were looking for a place to find community, warm up, share a meal, laugh and forget about their difficulties. They found it at Apage Table which is also where I found myself. I decided to go volunteer in hopes of meeting some people in need of friendship and an ear to talk to. The idea was to listen to their stories to find out what life on the streets i like and what their needs are. This way we can raise money to help where they most need it. At first, there was this US vs THEM mentality where the locals saw the volunteers as outsiders who couldn’t understand what they were going through but as the minutes passed and the volunteers became interested in their conversations, card game successes and neighbourhood tales something great happened – the divide was bridged and people started to see each other as friends. I sat playing 10’s (a new card game to me) with four characters that were funny, genuine and a bit too honest. They told of life on the street, visits to shelters and the many changes that were needed to make the system better. They also spoke a little of their families and casual jobs they were just starting. It became apparent that they were going to need other people to encourage them in their fresh start. I look forward to seeing them again and want to discover more ways to help – socks is just the beginning!