80,000 lives changed this past year through United Way

Imagine your life changing in an instant after suffering a devastating brain injury due to an aneurysm. Imagine having to re-learn how to walk, talk, to feed and dress yourself. Months later, when you’re finally discharged from the hospital, imagine you are completely on your own.

This is Bev’s* story.

“I’m so surprised I’m still alive.”

Bev is in her 60s. She had been living in an abusive relationship for years and became socially isolated. So when Bev was strong enough to leave the hospital, her first stop was a safe house, funded by United Way.

“I was so afraid of everything.”

At the safe house, Bev was described as generous, helpful, strong and as someone who never gave up. It’s similar to the way she was described at her previous job. In fact she had been recognized with a “caring and sharing” award after 10 years of service.

Recently, Bev moved into her own cozy apartment. “Return to Health,” another program funded by United Way, sent a volunteer to help get her settled. This service helps isolated and frail seniors transitioning before, during and after hospital stays.

“I didn’t think I deserved a place like this.”

The volunteer, Kate*, helped Bev apply for all kinds of services including financial tools and transportation. Kate became a regular friendly face. The two women got together to go for walks in the community and to practice engaging in conversations. They went to a local seniors centre so Bev could get comfortable meeting people again.

Now Bev goes to knitting and crafts workshops twice a week at the seniors centre — all on her own. She has another social circle with a brain injury group. She goes for lunch with her old workmates. She has regained her confidence.

“I am so grateful. I would not be where I am today without all this help.”

Domestic violence often happens behind closed doors. But the effects are undeniable.

Bev is just one of more than 80,000 lives changed this past year through United Way.

Your gift today will be invested in a network of local organizations and programs for people like Bev to access safe houses and counselling as well as support to enable them to get back on their feet. Every dollar stays local. To donate, please visit uwgv.ca or call (250) 385-6708.

*Bev’s and Kate’s names have been changed to protect their identities.

Comments are closed

Just Posted

MLA Adam Olsen calls for ‘substantial’ changes in provincial economy

Green Party MLA also criticizes gap between government rhetoric and actions

500 pounds of turkey served at Cool Aid community Christmas dinner

Annual dinner serves hundreds of community members

VIDEO: Annual Tuba Christmas concert draws large crowd to Market Square

Over 100 tuba and euphonium players gathered to play festive tunes

Revisit Christmas past as Point Ellice House displays Victorian-era traditions

Antique bobbles, cards, decor and more are on display

Bold and brassy quintet touches down at UVic

Internationally recognized Canadian Brass performing with Victoria Symphony on Dec. 21

VIDEO: Success of wildlife corridors in Banff National Park has advocates wanting more

Demand for more highway protection escalated after seven elk were killed by a semi-trailer near Canmore

Sharks beat Canucks 4-2 to snap 6-game skid

Vancouver visits Vegas on Sunday

Fans sing Canadian anthem after sound system breaks at BMW IBSF World Cup

The Canadians in attendance made sure their team and flag were honoured on the podium

VIDEO: Fire destroys Big White Ski Resort chalet

Social media eulogies peg the property, nicknamed “The Pharamacy,” as both loved and hated

Prince George RCMP use bait packages to catch porch pirates over the holidays

First-in-Canada program with Amazon looks to combat parcel theft

Nanaimo mechanical engineer creates thief tracking program

Nanaimo Thief Tracking lets users plot and share information about thefts online

Mayor wants B.C. to institutionalize severely mental ill people who are homeless

Those suffering from mental health conditions, such as schizophrenia, need specialized care, mayor says

Five things of note from Trudeau’s mandate letters to his ministers

Some marching orders come from the Liberal Party’s campaign, while others are new additions

Scheer’s resignation tips party into internal war over school tuition payments

The Conservatives have a Toronto convention already scheduled for April

Most Read