You are here: About Us > News

Northern Mat & Bridge Pays it Forward

On a frigid winter day in Montreal, a reporter was filming a social experiment set up to record reactions to a homeless teenager. They wanted to find out if people would stop and help a young man in such a dire situation. The teenage boy, who was only posing as homeless, watched hopelessly as people walked by ignoring him. Then a homeless man named Putulik Qumaq came by, saw his need, and in a genuine moment of human compassion gladly gave up his own coat to the boy. This interaction was captured on video. To our surprise, Qumaq was wearing a Northern Mat & Bridge touque! His actions, which Qumaq attributes to "the good spirit," inspired our company to pay it forward and donate 1000 hats to homeless shelters across Canada.

Putulik Qumag Northern Mat and Bridge Touque 

Why is Northern Mat & Bridge Giving Back?

Most of us are incredibly fortunate and have not had to experience how harsh a Canadian winter can be while homeless. Having the proper clothing can mean the difference between life and death for homeless people. Shelters are set up for relief, but they become overcrowded and feel the pressure when the temperature drops. These institutions can benefit from any help that the public can provide in collecting warm winter clothing to meet the needs of the homeless population during the cold winter months.

Where is Northern Mat & Bridge Giving Back?

Northern Mat & Bridge is assisting three shelters in their outreach efforts by providing 1000 wool touques that they can give to people in need. These touques will provide warmth to homeless people living in large urban centres across Canada. Here's where our donations are going:

  • The Open Door (Montreal, QC)
    • Address: 4006 Dorchester Blvd.
    • Telephone: (514) 939-1970
  • The Mustard Seed (Edmonton, AB)
    • Address: 10568 114 St.
    • Telephone: (780) 426-5600
    • E-mail:
  • The Mustard Seed (Calgary, AB)
    • Address: 4216 54 Ave. SE
    • Telephone: (403) 269-1319
    • E-mail:

We encourage our online visitors, customers and employees to pay it forward as well and give back to your community. There is so much need, especially in the cities, and you can help by bringing gently used winter clothing to your local homeless shelter. If you're unsure of which organizations need your generosity, contact the United Way and they will help you decide where your donations will have the most impact.

Comments are closed for this post, but if you have spotted an error or have additional info that you think should be in this post, feel free to contact us.