I came to the AWAC Supported Housing Program in 2011 because I was severely depressed and was having extreme panic attacks. I had to have surgery for ulcers and was unable to look after myself and maintain my housing. I applied to the program and was accepted right away.
I had addiction programs which didn't help the depression and panic attacks. I self-medicated to deal with problems but it didn't help. I thought I was covering my butt, but I wasn't.
What I liked about being at AWAC was that the staff were not judgmental towards me, only kind. The staff took care of me. My temperament was a bit out of control because I wasn't handling my problems properly. I wasn't my usual self.
I had a relapse last year and fell back into active drug addiction. I hit rock bottom. Again, there wasn't judgement, only kindness and caring. I wasn't owning up to my responsibility at first. I give nothing but high praise to this program and all of the staff members. Without this support, I could not have survived.
I have been blessed with being accepted into subsidized housing through BC Housing. I will move into a newly renovated apartment and I have lots of supports in place to help me through this transition. This has all happened so quickly. If AWAC hadn't been here for me, this blessing would not have happened.
I hope this program is able to keep going in the future because it is a very important program for women to have this type of second stage housing. Women need support in order to move back into society.
I lived in the AWAC Supported Housing Program for two years, 2011-2013. I was also here in 2006-2007.
The first time, my boyfriend had assaulted me and I ended up in a shelter. The Victim Services worker introduced me to the housing coordinator of the AWAC Supported Housing Program and I moved in shortly after. I stayed for about a year and went back to live with my boyfriend.
The second time I came to stay at the supported housing program, I was brought here bt the RCMP because my ex-boyfriend tried to kill me with a golf club. I was very ill when I arrived at AWAC. I didn't know at the time, but I was later diagnosed with breast cancer. I've since had a double mastectomy.
I was dazed and confused.. I needed support to get back on track. There was always someone here to talk to when I needed it. I don't know what I would have done if it wasn't for the staff here at AWAC.
On July 2, 2013, I moved to the Friendship Lodge into my own apartment. I'm doing really good. I was ready to move forward and independently into my own home.