Homeless man stuck in ‘vicious circle’

Homeless man stuck in ‘vicious circle’

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Dale Offer, who says he's homeless, wants to see the "vicious circle" broken in Oliver and other communities. Photo by Lyonel Doherty
Dale Offer, who says he's homeless, wants to see the "vicious circle" broken in Oliver and other communities. Photo by Lyonel Doherty
Dale Offer, who says he’s homeless, wants to see the “vicious circle” broken in Oliver and other communities. (Photo by Lyonel Doherty)

A 62-year-old homeless man in Oliver says he’s living in a “vicious circle” where he can’t find help.

Dale Offer visited the Chronicle this morning, saying he’s been living under a bridge for six months because he can’t find accommodation. And because he doesn’t have a job, he can’t afford a motel room.

“I talked to the mayor, I talked to Kiwanis (housing), I tried all the motels . . . I haven’t eaten in three days.”

(The Chronicle did offer him an egg salad sandwhich, but he declined, saying he couldn’t stomach eggs after previously raising chickens.)

Offer said he came from Victoria six months ago where he was living in low-income housing. He came to Oliver to pick fruit, but he said the farmers had already hired their pickers.

The man said he went to the Oliver Food Bank, but all they gave him was a box of crackers and two bananas because he didn’t have any cooking appliances.

“I’m trying to survive but there’s nothing I can do. Welfare (social services) won’t give me any food; they just told me to go to the food bank.”

Offer said it’s a vicious circle for people like him.

“I can’t handle it. I need some food because I’m losing weight. I need a place to live so I can keep warm . . . I’ll be dead by the end of the week.”

Hovanes said he doesn’t remember having a conversation with Offer.

“He should be in touch with social services, and in an emergency, perhaps the Salvation Army. It is getting colder and I hope he finds shelter.”

The mayor said there are a couple of soup kitchens in town (run by churches) that the man could take advantage of.

 

4 COMMENTS

  1. I know Dale, our church along with other organizations in town (ie. Oliver Missions) and we have both fed Dale and counseled him to move out of rural areas in BC to seek better social programs. I even have a box of winter clothing in my lobby waiting for him to pick up. Dale was eating yesterday outside of Buy-Low with $10 he received from someone for working. I brought him a hot Tims coffee to go woth his steaming meal from the deli. There’s more to this story than is being reported here. Many health care workers, residents, civil servants, parishioners and good willed citizens and non profits have offered help and wisdom. This story, in my opinion, is more than a low barrier housing issue, it is also about mental health.

  2. I am so sad to hear our town is not better equipped to provide a hand up to people caught in these difficult situations. I would be happy to provide Mr. Offer with some money for food and a bus ticket to Kelowna or Victoria where he might get more appropriate help from social services and where there might be a homeless shelter to help him get on his feet. If you know where I can find him, please contact me.

  3. This man came to my door asking for work and that he had not eaten for three days as well. I offered to make him a sandwich and what he wanted in it. he then told me he wasn’t hungry. So you have not eaten but your not hungry? I felt he was just looking for money that I know that others were giving him.

  4. Extremely aggressive towards my wife and I a few months back. Made her feel almost threatened. Same story then, and we were part of the problem for some unknown reason……..

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