J’s Story: Riding towards Independence
- May 29, 2020
J is happiest when he has a consistent schedule and lots of routine in his day. Prior to the COVID-19 shutdown of services, 21-year old J, who is supported by St.Amant Home Share program, spent his weekdays attending the St.Amant School. There, his days were filled with classes, activities, and community field trips.
At school, J used a bike every day and swam every week, Joyce Douglas, Principal at St.Amant School recalls. “J is a really busy, active young man, and physical activity is really important to him. He loves to go out, and he has attended many events in the city such as theatre, movies, parks, and shopping. He loved MTYP.”
In school, he participated in classroom activities, morning meetings, group lessons, cooking classes, and enjoyed being helpful around the class. He did the classroom recycling and often helped other students with their lunches. He attended enrichment classes where he learned to apply his communication skills with his iPad and sign language, to other activities.
When the school had to close, J’s schedule was completely disrupted and the absence of the structure that J is accustomed to was a challenge. J’s Home Share provider Robyn recognized this immediately and has worked to maintain as much routine and schedule as possible, while keeping him safe at home.
J’s complex health needs require a nurse support at all times, and he uses a ventilator at night. He also has a childhood history of pneumonia so his Home Share family is being extra vigilant with physical distancing restrictions and stay-at-home recommendations.
Thankfully, the family lives on a large country property with lots of room to roam. They have purchased a porch swing and a trampoline but what J is missing most is a bike. There is nothing quite like the freedom and independence of a bike ride. He had a custom bike at home when he was younger, but he has since outgrown it. Luckily, he has been able to borrow one from the school but it doesn’t fit him as well as it could, and he will need to return it. Having one of his own would make a world of difference!
While the pandemic has meant a pause in school and the many activities J was a part of, you can help him get his own custom bike!
The necessary customizations required for J’s bike is cost-prohibitive and your help is needed. Robyn, his Home Share provider, says “J thrives in the outdoors and physical activity reduces his stress. This allows for a more willing participant in other aspects of daily living. It also provides positive mental health and an important social outlet for someone who is non-verbal.”
At this time of disruption, distancing and uncertainty, staying active and involved has never been more important. Your gift will allow J to be active and happy! Please consider giving a gift today!
Matching gift doubles your donation for COVID-19 relief
- May 22, 2020
Recent stay at home orders and physical distancing recommendations have given us a taste of the isolation and loneliness that many people with disabilities feel; not just during a global pandemic, but every day. We are reminded daily of the importance of connection, communication and community.
Unfortunately, the COVID-19 pandemic has forced many of our generous community partners to cancel all our spring and summer fundraising events. This will lead to significant financial losses and will reduce the assistance we can offer people supported by St.Amant. Because of this, we need your help.
Your donation will be matched dollar for dollar, up to $10,000, by a generous donor in memory of Marcel Thompson!
For every dollar you give, two dollars of support will be received! Your past support demonstrates your commitment to increasing the quality of life for children and adults with developmental disabilities and autism and your generosity is needed once again.
If you give today, your donation will go even further!
Your gift today will help alleviate loneliness, boredom, isolation and anxiety and will help fund:
• Tablets and laptops to connect people we support with their family and friends, and with mental and spiritual health resources
• Streaming services such as Netflix or Disney+ for education and entertainment
• Gift cards for restaurants that offer delivery service, for special nights at home that also help local businesses
• Outdoor furniture, adapted bikes and raised garden beds to connect people with their neighbours, giving them a breath of fresh air, and a break from the monotony of long days stuck inside.
• Overhead lifts, adapted power wheelchairs, and equipment to increase accessibility and ensure the safety of our frontline staff and the people being supported.
Your support will give more than 2,000 people something to look forward to!
Every dollar you give will be thoughtfully invested to make people happier, and to feel more connected and less isolated. Although some Manitoba businesses are beginning to reopen, many of the people supported by St.Amant have complex medical issues and are at increased health risk. This will mean many more weeks of physical distancing, restricted visitation and isolation. Your support will help to ease some of this stress.
Please give today:
• Online at stamant.ca/COVID-19
• Mail your cheque or credit card number with the accompanying reply device and use the reply envelope to mail to: St.Amant Foundation 440 River Rd, Winnipeg, MB R2M 3Z9
• Call Noreen at 204-258-7073
Your generosity and commitment to the 2,000 people supported by St.Amant and their families are treasured gifts today, and always.
Thank you for your support and stay safe,
Director, St.Amant Foundation
P.S. Your donation will be matched, up to $10,000, so that every dollar you give is DOUBLED!
P.P.S. Donate by June 15th to make an immediate difference.
Danya’s Story: Still Dreaming
- May 12, 2020
Before the lockdown, Dayna was planning the trip of a lifetime; a week on the West Coast with her Home Share family made possible by your generous donations. It’s always been her dream to see the ocean, wildlife, and ferry boats.
Since birth, Dayna, 22, has battled fragile health. She has liver disease, trouble breathing, and survived multiple open-heart surgeries and other procedures. She feels pain, fatigue and has difficulty walking, so she uses a wheelchair provided by St.Amant.
Earlier this spring, Dayna was feeling stronger. Her Home Share mom Angela and her care team were planning to make her dream come true, and everyone was counting on the support of St.Amant Foundation’s generous donors to bring it to pass.
“It’s such a shame that the trip was cancelled because she’s strong enough right now, but the future is uncertain. Last year she was in the hospital the whole summer,” Angela said.
While Dayna waits for the pandemic to end, she takes walks around the block, but she’s bored and separated from all her friends. Dayna recently received a donated video game console and needs a new TV so the systems can be connected. This will help her pass the time and give her a way to chat and game with friends while she remains isolated at home.
“I like playing video games, and if my foster parents are watching something on TV that I don’t want to see, I can go up to my room.”
Everyone is waiting and hoping Dayna’s health will remain strong so she can make that trip when travel restrictions have eased. Until then, you can help make her days feel less lonely.
“I can play games online with my friends and watch a funny movie in my own room.”
At this time of disruption, distancing, and uncertainty, staying connected has never been more important. Your gift will keep Dayna connected to friends while awaiting a trip of a lifetime! Please consider giving today!
Jennifer’s Story: Hoping for Connection
Meet Jennifer. Jennifer is very outgoing and her days were once filled with activities. Before the COVID-19 crisis hit Manitoba, she attended a day program three days a week, and volunteered at St.Amant the other two weekdays. On weekends, she enjoyed visiting various breweries and bars, swimming and hanging out with her friends. Like all of us, she is missing this routine and the daily outings and social interaction that she used to have.
Your support is needed to help Jennifer stay connected!
Jennifer began receiving support from St.Amant in 2006. In April of 2016, she reached a major milestone as she moved into her very own St. Vital apartment. With guidance from St.Amant’s Supported Independent Living program, she receives help with her job search and resume writing, as well as budgeting, meal planning, shopping and cleaning. Jennifer now lives on her own and has been looking for work in the service industry.
Jennifer needs a computer.
Like all of us, she has been staying home and staying safe and it has been a long time since she has seen any friends or family. She would like to connect with the people she is missing and to video chat with her mom whom she has not seen for several months. A computer will make it possible for her to maintain these important relationships and will keep her connected to family and friends. Her fixed budget makes unexpected expenses extremely challenging. Any large purchases require months, sometimes years, of careful budgeting, but the COVID-19 crisis afforded none of that.
Jennifer says: “I am a likeable person and enjoy being with people, because of COVID-19 it is hard for me to be isolated at home all the time”.
Jennifer is also looking forward to resuming her job hunt soon and she dreams of becoming a server in a restaurant. In order to be best prepared for this opportunity, she needs a computer so she can complete the Smart Choices course online. Thanks to past donor support, she took a bartending course in 2017 and received her bartending certificate. The Smart Choices course will be an excellent complement to this certification and will increase her employability.
At this time of disruption, distancing and uncertainty, staying connected has never been more important. A computer would make a world of difference to Jennifer. Please consider a gift today and help Jennifer stay connected during this challenging time!
St.Amant Foundation shares success stories
- May 11, 2020
Our donors made last year a great success and you can read all about it in St.Amant Foundation’s spring newsletter! When negative news abounds, these stories of joy and triumph will provide a welcome respite. This spring newsletter shares only a handful of the amazing outcomes that the generous support of donors made possible.
You will learn how donations helped Matthew stay connected and Doreen, Martina, and Joey be healthy and active. You can also read about the ways this support made a difference for Katelyn and Gloria and many others! Click the image below to open the newsletter.
You can also make a difference in the lives of the more than 2,000 children and adults with developmental disabilities and autism supported by St.Amant by giving a gift today! www.stamant.ca/connect