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.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Comments are closed

Just Posted

Six months to Francophone Games, 600 volunteers needed

Online applications open on Jan. 14

Tech consortium invests $25 million into four University of Victoria research projects

Investments come with goal of developing, implement technologies created by Canadians

Organizers seek input for long-awaited Oaklands community garden

Oswald Park Community Garden Design Workshop coming up on Jan. 19

Improperly transporting a pet in the back of the truck can cost up to $368

Police recommend keeping all animals inside the passenger portion of the vehicle

Mass-timber project in Esquimalt switches from condos to rentals

Corvette Landing will now offer rental units in the area

B.C. VIEWS: Few clouds on Horgan’s horizon

Horgan’s biggest challenge in the remainder of his term will be to keep the economy humming along

B.C. forest industry grasps for hope amid seven-month strike, shutdowns, changes

Some experts say this could be worse for forestry than the 2008 financial crisis

Northern B.C. RCMP investigating alleged sexual assault in lingerie store

One person was transported by ambulance to hospital following RCMP investigation at Sedaz

UBC, Iranian-Canadian community create memorial scholarship in honour of victims

The Jan. 8 crash killed 176 people, including 57 Canadians

Disrespectful that Horgan won’t meet during northern B.C. tour: hereditary chief

Na’moks said he was frustrated Horgan didn’t meet with the chiefs

Canucks extend home win streak to 8 with 4-1 triumph over Sharks

Victory lifts Vancouver into top spot in NHL’s Pacific Division

BC Green Party leader visits northern B.C. pipeline protest site

Adam Olsen calls for better relationship between Canada, British Columbia and First Nations

Most Read