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Jackie’s Story

The Journey to Rediscovery

During her adult years, Jackie of Hamilton found herself stuck between a rock and a hard place.

A survivor of domestic violence, Jackie was often beaten and hurt, and wound up in the hospital numerous times. The injuries were so detrimental, she had to re-learn how to eat and dress herself, and how to walk again, while also being a mom to young children.

Along with her physical condition, Jackie also battles schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.

With United Way supported programs, Jackie received the treatment and assistance she needed to get back on her feet, and is now flourishing.

In 2016, Jackie began attending a community seniors centre and made many friends, most of whom helped her through the worst of days. She loves partaking in painting and colouring classes, as well as bingo and playing cards.

The centre also offers breakfast and Jackie is always appreciative of a healthy meal first thing in the morning.

“They have helped me through bad things and good things,” she says. “I feel wonderful. I feel like a million dollars, and it’s all because of the programs I go to.”

Jackie says the life-changing opportunities she has received have shaped her life into something promising.

“The programs the community gives are wonderful for people who really need the help or really want the help. There’s all kinds of organizations out there that can help you.”

She thanks United Way for the organization’s continued support and the assistance people like her receive through local programming.

“Without United Way, I would be lost.”



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“I started my relationship with the agency four years ago. I was attending a program to learn about computers and someone suggested I could have lunch at the senior’s centre in the same building as the school. I was served delicious lunches and was able to participate in activities. The centre gives seniors a sense of independence and a chance to have a social life. They make them feel important.
As a newcomer, Sebastian found himself struggling in school and trying to learn English. Now, five years later, he is volunteering at the United Way-supported agency and serving as a leader to newcomers arriving today. His family emigrated from there home country when Sebastian was seven. “It was because of the state my country was in. It wasn’t the greatest in terms of safety. We were shot at one day when going to my grandma’s house, and I think that’s what led my parents to finally make the decision to immigrate.”