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A winner at the game of life

Cindy wears a striped t-shirt and sits on a couch in a rec room.

A United Way-supported program provided Cindy with a safe space to build her social skills and gain confidence

“As a person with an intellectual disability, it’s not always so easy for me to reach out to others. Yet, I know I have much to offer because I am sociable, friendly and cheerful. It’s important for me to have friendships. I have to overcome other obstacles because of my diminished vision and partial paralysis, but I find ways to look after my personal needs. 

That is why I rely on the services of the agency affiliated with United Way. They help me with social interaction, learning and, of course, recreation! My favourite activities are bingo, karaoke and outings, such as restaurants and bowling. When I play, I like to win.  

But I can be a winner in other ways too. Through the activities, I am recognized for my initiative and engagement and for taking on personal challenges. I can go beyond expectations. It shows that I have stick-to-it-iveness. 

Since joining the program, I have gained more confidence. Before, I was too shy to ask for help. Today, I am learning to communicate with others, to say things in the right way and to apply my filters. With the organization, I feel safe. 

It was tough during the pandemic when I couldn’t go outside. I felt isolated even though I could talk to my friends on the phone. I want to urge donors to continue to give so that the agency can keep offering help. United Way supports the agency’s services, and I can go there to have more control over my life. Thank you for helping and giving me the chance to tell my story.”

United Way program participant

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