Mike struggled with depression for 12 years before he hit rock bottom. He emptied his bank accounts, cashed his insurance policies and drove to a Niagara Falls motel, ready to end his life.

After three days of pacing in his motel room, Mike realized he couldn’t go through with his decision.

“With much hesitation I called my father and told him “I don’t want to die” and “’I will do whatever it takes,’” Mike explains.  Just a few hours later he was placed in a psychiatric facility at Brampton Civic Hospital.

Mike spent five months in the hospital facility before he was moved to St. Leonard’s Place Peel (SLP). Not only did SLP provide Mike with a stable place to live during his recovery, but he also began to reintegrate himself into the community. “This place provides a community and I immediately felt welcome,” Mike says. “A community with structure that I needed so badly.”

Mike found success through the Rejuvenated Education Program. He learned life skills such as problem solving, communication and accountability. He also started to pursue his personal goals by re-enrolling in the CGA program to become an accountant. After 16 months Mike’s journey is not over, but he is on the right track.

“St Leonard’s has helped me see that I am capable and deserving of success,” says Mike. “I am very grateful and fortunate that they entered my life at just the right time.”

When you give to United Way, you give new immigrants more than food and shelter. You give them the possibility of a new beginning.