Client Stories

Hear Directly From One Of Our Clients

Bethea is one of thousands of people impacted by your donation to UJA. A mother of three, she had to file for bankruptcy when she got divorced. She received financial and emotional support from many agencies funded by UJA. Bethea says she doesn’t know where her life would be without your help.

Miracle Baby

BabyAfter 13 years of trying to conceive a child, we are delighted to announce that our long-awaited miracle has arrived. Annie was born on Saturday, March 4, 2017 weighing in at 6 lbs.2 oz. Anybody who has experienced the infertility journey knows that, in addition to the emotional and physical pain, there is also a huge financial burden. Our little miracle could not have come into the world without the JFLT Fertility Loan. From the bottom of my heart, I thank JFLT for being there when we needed them most, and for giving my husband a new branch on his family tree that was cut short by the Nazis. Thanks to you, JFLT, we now have a little one who will carry on his name.
– Jessica B.

On My Way to Recovery

SulyDJewish Free Loan Toronto helped me during the worst month of my life. It may be hard to believe, but last month when I was on my way to pay my landlord, I was robbed of my rent money and then later struck by a car. During the accident my glasses broke, I suffered a minor head injury, and now need dental work. When I showed JFLT the police report, the bill for the ambulance and the estimates from the optometrist and dentist, they gave me a loan within days.

I would like to thank my Jewish Family & Child social worker Simon Kalkstein for helping me over the years, and show my appreciation to JFLT for being there when I needed them most. Hopefully one day I can give back by becoming a volunteer.

– Suly D.

From Homelessness To Hope

From Homelessness To Hope

“When I was a 3rd year nursing student at Trent University, I was renting a room from a woman and her daughter in North York. When my OSAP was late, I asked the landlady if she would wait with the rent. She refused and told me I had to move out immediately. I arranged to rent another room in North York, but when I was on my way there in a taxi, I got a call on my cell phone saying the room was no longer available. Not knowing what to do or where to go, I asked the driver to take me downtown. I made my way over to a drum shop in Kensington Market owned by some friends of mine. Although these friends allowed me to store my belongings in their basement, they did not offer me a place to stay. After some more phone calls to friends and more rejections, I reluctantly made my way to a shelter. The shelter was so horrible I did not sleep a wink. Afraid of the bed bugs, I stayed awake all night talking to the staff.

I then decided to do something different: find a place where I could sit and study. Pearson Airport was the only all-night place I could think of, so I made my way there and stayed there night after night. My routine was to study until I finally dozed off in a chair. This began to wear heavily on me and soon my body began to shut down. One night, after nearly 3 months of being at the airport, a security guard and police officer approached me and said “You cannot stay here any longer”. I approached Jewish Family & Child to help me but was told it would take 3 weeks to place me in transitional housing. While I was waiting, I would go into Tim Hortons at night and wait until morning came to go to school.

When I was about to enter the transitional housing, I approached JFLT for a loan to purchase the basics I needed to set up a home. I am eternally grateful to JFLT and to the other Jewish service agencies that came to my aid. Without them, I do not know where I would be today. Luckily, my story does have a happy ending. On June 7, 2017, I graduated from Trent University’s Baccalaureate Nursing program and in August passed my NCLEX-RN exam (licensing exam for RNs). Soon my next stop will again be the airport- but this time to board a plane to Florida where I have secured a job. I am glad JFLT took a chance on a 62-year-old homeless nursing student. It paid off.

Gail R. (name changed at client’s request)

Israel Was Beyond My Wildest Expectations

Israel Was Beyond My Wildest Expectations

“In June 2014, I graduated from CHAT. While most of my friends were busy getting their dorm rooms ready at Ontario universities, I had other plans. My dream was to spend a year in Israel at Bar Ilan University. My parents said that if I could raise the money through scholarships and grants, I could go. After filling out numerous applications, I began to think that my dream would never come true. Then my cousins, who had spent a year in Israel with help from JFLT, told me about the wonderful services this organization provides. I contacted JFLT and was granted an appointment right away. The service was outstanding. It was extremely fast too, as I applied very close to my anticipated departure date. When my $7500 loan was approved, I was thrilled beyond words and in October, I embarked on my journey to Israel. My experience in Israel was indescribable. I took several interesting courses at the university, visited many beautiful sites and spent Shabbatot on kibbutzim in the Golan Heights. I made many new friends and bonded with girls from all over the world. I am so thankful to JFLT for making my dream come true. Because of them, Israel will always be a part of me.”

Ninette B.

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