Dorothy Anne isn’t sure how she could have weathered the storms of her life without support.
Thanks to the Neighbourhood Food program at Chandler Mowat Community Centre, she didn’t have to.
For the past five years, Dorothy Anne has helped provide care to her autistic grandson, after his mother died of cancer. She gave up her job and moved to her son’s home to provide this care and support.
But it came at a cost.
“It was a very difficult time. I love my grandson, but he required a lot of help.”
Her son, still traumatized at his girlfriend’s death, had problems of his own, struggling with addiction.
It became too much for Dorothy Anne, who started having panic attacks. She just couldn’t stay with her son any longer – she needed a place of her own.
Dorothy Anne found affordable housing, and started counselling. She then added to what she calls her “umbrella of support” by connecting with the Neighbourhood Food program.
It became much more than food for Dorothy Anne, who was able to learn more about other programs and supports in her community.
When COVID-19 hit Waterloo Region, Dorothy Anne was grateful to see the food program continue, in a way that made her feel safe.
Then tragedy struck again. Her beloved grandson moved to Newfoundland, to be with his other grandparents. Shortly after, she received news that a granddaughter had died of an overdose.
“There were days when I wasn’t able to get out of bed,” said Dorothy Anne. Staff arranged a safe delivery of her food so she didn’t have to go without.
“We weren’t left to fend on our own,” said Dorothy Anne. “They would call and check in on me.”
Your support had made is possible for Dorothy Anne to no be alone during a very difficult year.
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