Daniel Johnstone, also known as Can Man Dan, is an award-winning activist, author, motivational speaker, and community organizer from Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Daniel's new book, ...I Think God is Real: The Extraordinary Journey of Can Man Dan, documents his family's struggle as Indigenous Peoples of Canada to overcome poverty and discrimination against insurmountable odds. The book also explores the mental health and addiction issues that eventually led Daniel to experience severe burnout and hit a personal rock bottom. He is also the founder and Executive Director of the Can Man Dan Foundation, an Edmonton-based registered charitable organization designed to alleviate community stress and support vulnerable populations.
Daniel is now using his incredible life story to empower and inspire others who are going through similar challenges that he has endured. With a focus on the vital importance of mental health, therapy, and spirituality, Daniel hopes to encourage his audience to acknowledge and prioritize themselves and their well-being. Through his book tour, he hosts community events across Edmonton that provide a safe and inclusive space for life-changing discussion.
Daniel was born in Edmonton in 1987 (during the notorious "Black Friday" tornado) and has firsthand experience with the lingering effects of generational trauma. Daniel was raised in a single-parent, low-income household, and for years, his family struggled to make ends meet. During this difficult time, Daniel, his mother, and brother relied on various social services and programs to keep their family afloat, and these experiences were the catalyst for Daniel's remarkable journey as Can Man Dan.
Daniel's philanthropy work started in June, 2011, when he decided to go door-to-door collecting food and donations as a way of giving back to the city that took care of his family during his early life. Since then, Daniel has raised millions in resources and funding to help struggling Albertans without keeping a single dollar for himself. Under Daniel's leadership and visionary thinking, what started off as a small community project has escalated into a far-reaching movement of love and compassion.