Reverend Allen Tysick with Worship Associate Dar Gareau-Levy —
The heart of the Dandelion Society is relationship, being advocates for those with no power, and speaking out for justice and equality for all. Reverend Al Tysick will share with us some of his stories from the street, interwoven with his own personal struggle with theology and his movement from a conservative faith to a more liberal and progressive one … and how the people of the streets have helped him to do that.
Born in Ottawa in1946, raised by a strong mother who lived on welfare, Allen Tysick, known as “Rev Al” by Victoria’s street community, has been committed to the streets — where his heart and “family” are — for more than 40 years. He founded the Victoria Dandelion Society in April, 2011, as a way to carry his work on the front lines into the future.
Every morning he hits the streets at 5:30 am with coffee, muffins, and whatever warm supplies he has. While those who sleep outside are awakened by the sounds of an awakening city, Al is there to make sure everyone has a safe and welcoming start to their day. He spends the rest of his day going to hospitals, jails and residencies, helping those he visits in whatever they need.