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Meet our Outstanding Canadians: Joe Roberts

HeroImage_Joe Roberts


In 1989, Joe Roberts was living under a bridge, homeless on skid row. Today he is an advocate, author, and the Executive Director of The Push for Change. Through The Push for Change, Joe Roberts is currently walking across Canada pushing a shopping cart to raise awareness and money to prevent youth homelessness in Canada. Joe started his 24 kilometre a day walk on May 1, 2016 in St. John’s NL and is finishing on September 30, 2017 in Vancouver.

Starting The Push for Change himself, Joe has taken almost two years off to fulfill his promise to pay it forward with his journey across Canada – 9,000 kilometers in 517 days. Joe is engaging all Canadians with talks and fundraisers as he treks across Canada, including visiting kids in schools and sharing his personal experience and possibility mindset to help prevent youth homelessness.

“We were thrilled to learn that Shaw had chosen myself and The Push for Change to honour with an Outstanding Canadian award," says Joe. "When we began walking across Canada pushing a shopping cart, a symbol of homelessness, we were not sure what impact we were going to have. Since our humble beginnings, we have been inspired by Canadians across eight provinces with their support and encouragement. Simply put, it’s been absolutely extraordinary. As we celebrate Canada’s 150 Birthday, it’s important to acknowledge what makes Canada great. We are a nation that supports grassroots movements, we support trail blazers and change makers. From day one, we wanted to create a legacy for youth across Canada that need help. To support a conversation on how we can all do our small part to help end youth homelessness. Thanks to Shaw and their generous contribution and attention we can reach more people with our message of hope.”