When Alex first connected with the Centre in 2016, she was involved in an abusive relationship exacerbating her mental health struggles. She described her first experience spending time here as both awkward and comfortable, “I came in, grabbed some coffee, sat there by myself for a bit… I didn’t have to really worry about anything.”
The fact that the centre was women only was a big factor in making that choice to come.
She wanted to continue to get to know people and picked up a volunteer application to do so while she was working. Alex soon became known as one of the most efficient and hardworking volunteers to set foot into the Community Kitchen.
WCWRC changed my life completely. I’ve got full independence… It’s given me a lot of different people who I can turn to and talk to.
She transitioned into the WE WIL: Women Empowering Women Into Leadership Program in 2018 and, after graduation, entered the Mentorship Program. Mentors gain valuable work experience helping with the work of the Centre and receive an honourarium. As a Mentor, Alex continued to demonstrate impressive work ethic and resilience. During this time, she also began accessing supports at the Centre to leave her relationship and obtain housing of her own.
Alex demonstrated unfaltering commitment to the Centre, our community, and her Mentor position throughout the pandemic. She has since transitioned into a volunteer role and is always willing to help out where needed. The Mentorship Program and HOMES Program collaborated and worked tirelessly to support her in her first independent living situation. When asked how she feels now, Alex simply said, “I’m free.”