Gifts with Vision donations have helped 823 homeless or formerly homeless participants participate in a range of therapeutic recreation activities, critical to improving physical and mental health, social skills, and community connections. Activities include wellness supports or therapies such as mindfulness, aromatherapy, music and pet therapy, as well standard facilitated recreational pursuits such as baseball, bowling, and board games.
Richard (name changed to protect identity), 36, is one person who has benefited from Wesley’s housing settlement services enhanced with therapeutic recreational activities. He permitted a Wesley case worker to share his experience and comments about settlement services as relayed to staff.
“I’ve completely changed my life over the last 2 years. From living in a shelter, to having my own apartment, Wesley has really helped me,” Richard said.
Richard ended up in a shelter for five months after he and his wife separated, and then in a rooming house where residents’ alcohol and drug use, as well as bug infestations, added to a sense of hopelessness. He began meeting with a Wesley Transitions to Home case management worker. Richard’s health got on track after Wesley assisted him in finding a family doctor, dentist, and getting eyeglasses. He then began meeting with a psychologist to deal with thoughts of self-harm he had been living with since he was a child.
While Richard was hesitant at first, he eventually began attending Wesley’s group sessions and recreational programs. He says he now likes coming to Wesley Day Centre and participating in daily activities.
Thank you, Gifts with Vision!
—Andrea Buttars, Wesley Urban Ministries, Hamilton, Ontario
(“Support Fitness for Life” was a 2015 gift. Check out our currents gifts related to wellness.)