A client of Kelowna Women’s Shelter has the opportunity to make a fresh start in life thanks in part to the generosity of a local towing company.
Heidi (not her real name) came to the Shelter in May after leaving her partner of five years.
“I was hiding the truth. I was ashamed to say my partner was giving me problems,” she says. “I just feel happy and free now and not under his control anymore.”
When Heidi arrived, she had no money and no car.
“They gave me a place to stay, a roof and food. They were driving me everywhere, helping me with work, filing taxes,” she said. “I was overwhelmed to get all of this help.”
Heidi, who has a one-year-old son and a four-year-old daughter, began working as a house cleaner. But without a vehicle, she was often forced to wait for city buses and carry her cleaning supplies. If she was unable to find childcare, she would bring her children along, as she pushed a stroller and supplies uphill to clients’ homes.
Despite the challenges of using public transit, Heidi planned to continue to building her business. Then she got some unexpected good news.
Mario’s Towing had generously offered to donate three cars to Shelter residents, one of which would go to her free of charge.
Heidi calls it “life changing,” and says the car will allow her to develop her business and spend more time with her kids.
“I can’t believe there are people out there who would do that. I’m just so lucky to get them in my life,” she said with tears in her eyes. “It’s a very nice car. It’s a big vehicle. I can get the stroller right inside and all my cleaning things. It’s just perfect.”
Heidi says she is forever grateful to Mario’s Towing and Kelowna Women’s Shelter for the support.