Victim of Domestic Violence suffering from severe mental health and intellectual disability
I came to the food bank because I have no money and left my husband with only the clothes on my back. He is abusive and stalking me. I am hiding. When I came here, I was scared, felt alone, and was out of my element. This was 4 months ago. I had no clue that this place existed! Alaina (social worker at OakHaven) connected me with Halton Legal Services where I was got free legal advice about my landlord, who was trying to evict me. The lawyer helped me prepare for the tribunal and told me what my rights were. I won the case and I am not being kicked out anymore (even though I cannot afford my rent and my place is filled with cockroaches). Alaina introduced me to a worker from Canadian Mental Health Association who is going to help me with getting better housing and will take me to a group for people with anxiety. Every week that I come to the food bank, Alaina is there to talk to me and help me work through my fears. I have even called her on the phone when I’ve been breaking down and this has helped me feel safe and like I am not alone. I’m so grateful for what is happening in this building!
Individual who suffers from severe alcoholism and mental illness
They moved to the area after their mother passed away and ended up being homeless for a short period of time. They suffered from severe abuse growing up.
I started coming to the food bank because every time I relapse I would spend all my money on alcohol and ruin everything. I felt like I wanted to die. I have been in the psych ward numerous times, and have been suicidal after drinking binges because of my depression. I like talking to Alaina because she does not judge me and I can tell her the truth. She even got me a doctor! I had not been taking care of my health because I did not know where to go and I could not afford a taxi to the hospital. I am now taking medication and Dr. Breen is helping me a lot. Alaina referred me to an addictions program and has allowed me to use the phone and computer at Oak Haven so I can get things done. The ADAPT worker can even meet with me at Oak Haven sometimes, so it’s easy. Alaina encouraged me to get back to AA and I took her advice and went. I look forward to coming to the food bank every Thursday because I know that whatever I need, I can at least talk to someone and I know I’ll get help. There are always new things happening. I think that mother’s spirit or God or an angel sent me here.
Caregiver- illiterate immigrant caring for fully deaf 50 year old family member with no support
I had nothing and knew nothing. I get overwhelmed with my taxes because I cannot read or write in English. Alaina connected us with CCAC and CHS (Canadian Hearing Society). There is now a worker who comes to the home and helps me. I also finally finished my taxes (OPNC), and with the help of free legal clinic, I did my will. I can’t express how thankful I am. It makes me cry.