Frank, a senior, no longer fears for his safety

After finally finding a safe home, Frank discovered the benefits of fitness. He went back to school and now leads exercise classes for other low-income seniors like himself.

Frank confesses that depression began to creep up on him as a result of his very strict religious upbringing. He was constantly battling the sense of guilt instilled within him, always questioning his inherited beliefs.

Years later, Frank had little income and was living with his partner. Their relationship began to crumble and, one day, he found himself evicted and homeless. He ended up at a cramped, dirty communal rooming house. A steady stream of prostitutes flowed in and out of the house while residents succumbed to various substances inside.

Every day was a struggle, a competition over who would get the bread crumbs, who would have a place to sleep or who would get to the mailman first. And if you weren’t the first to the mailbox, there was a good chance your welfare cheque was gone. Even though Frank was surrounded by walls and a roof, this was not a home.

Eventually, Frank was introduced to a property owned and managed by Silvera for Seniors. He was overwhelmed with relief and a renewed notion of hope. He arrived with everything he owned in two black garbage bags.

“I was glad enough to have my own apartment to open my sleeping bag in,” he says. “I have my own address, my own key. And I have my own mailbox.” Frank now leaves his door unlocked at night to remind himself he no longer needs to fear being robbed or abused.

Frank started attending an exercise program for seniors and noticed a transformation in his body and his attitude. “I started to feel good about myself,” he says. “Better than I’d felt in a long time.”

Frank wanted to share what he describes as his “revival” with other low-income seniors so he returned to school and is now a certified fitness instructor. “It’s part of my own wellness,” he explains. “And I’m grateful that I have a place to keep moving in a healthy direction.”

I have my own address, my own key… I’m grateful that I have a place to keep moving in a healthy direction.