Andrew’s story: Why We Walk

16-year-old Andrew Erb of Barrie says he has participated in the Coldest Night of the Year (CNOY) walk for the last four or five years.

Andrew decided to #bethedifference after seeing the work his mom did for another agency that assisted individuals experiencing homelessness. “I decided I really wanted to raise money,” said Andrew. “I am like a lot of teenagers that don’t realize how fortunate we are and that we have a place to live.”

Community is important to Andrew. He is a five-year member of the 102 Royal Canadian Air Cadet Squadron. The Barrie-based squadron held a food drive prior to Christmas and donated stockings of gifts and a Christmas dinner to the kids at Youth Haven.

Since he began participating in the CNOY walk, Andrew has challenged himself when it comes to fundraising.
“I start at a price of maybe 500 bucks and then I will try to go higher and higher,” Andrew explained.
But for Andrew, there is more that motivates him to help youth who are experiencing homelessness.

“You want to try to get out there and help the community because you would want someone to do it for you. I decided it would be a good idea to fundraise and try to help someone have a better year and a better life.”

If this story inspired you, #bethedifference and sign up today for this year’s Coldest Night of the Year at

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