Melissa’s story in her own words

Melissa’s story in her own words

Melissa is someone supported in the Wellington Enhanced Supported Independent Living (SIL) program. For more information on Supported Independent Living, click here.

Three years ago I moved into my own apartment with the SIL program. At first I was very nervous as I didn’t know anyone but my friend Justin. But soon I met many new people in my apartment building that became like a little community to me!

Recently a special adult-tricycle that was given to me from my friend was stolen and I was very sad. But one of my support staff put up a “Go-Fund Me” page and everybody in the Guelph community made donations to this fund and it raised enough to buy a brand new bike. After they bought my bike there was $341.09 left over so I wanted to donate this money and help someone else like I was helped.

Since I had seen ads for the Toronto Sick Kids Hospital on TV it made me want to reach out to them and help. So I went with my staff to Toronto on a GO Bus, 2 subways and a Go Train home. I was so proud of myself since I have never taken a train or subway before and it was a bit scary but with staff’s support I did really well.

When we got to the hospital I saw a little girl going home from the hospital and it made me feel like they wanted me to help out. So I gave my donation to the Sick Kids Foundation because I want even more children to go home with their families and enjoy life. I presented a huge check to them and they were so appreciative that they gave me a special teddy bear and a thank you certificate. After that we went out to the Olde Spaghetti Factory to celebrate this special moment because I had helped out many young children in need.

I really enjoy giving back to the community and last winter I knitted 10 scarves for the “Tie One On” campaign where people put scarves and hats on the trees in downtown Guelph for the homeless.

It is the SIL program that helped me to keep my apartment and my independence. They have become like a family to me. I really LOVE Christian Horizons! A great big Thank You from me, Melissa!