“My life was pretty hectic. I was living on the streets, couch-surfing, [using] shelters.”

Robert Macgillivary, 26, has been using the Ally Centre of Cape Breton for years. He doesn’t remember how long.

Macgillivary thinks a lack of housing is contributing to the problem of homelessness in the region. He says a lot of students take up what rental properties there are available.

“We only have so much [housing] here. I call it depression island, really… Cape Breton Island.”

He visits local charity Loaves & Fishes for a meal but says if that meal is missed, it can be hard to find one elsewhere.