Safe Accessible Home

My name is Glen Allardyce. I have set up this gofundme to help raise awareness of my close friend Vanessa's battle with Asthma, Cerebral Palsy (C.P.) and a rare digestive disorder, who needs a safe, permanent accessible home to heal and thrive.

Currently Vanessa is living in a retrofitted junior one bedroom apartment that was built in the 60's. She cannot navigate her apartment due to it's inaccessible layout and lack of room for her wheelchair to maneuver around. It sits parked in the hallway because of the design of the apartment. If Vanessa needs any support she relies on friends and support staff to help her walk short distances like to the bathroom and to sit on the couch. She is unable to go about her day and do anything on her own because of the gross inaccessibility of her apartment.

The whole apartment is inaccessible as all the counters are average height and the stove is standard height. In the past when she had a manual chair that could squeeze into the kitchen she has burned her arm with second degree burns resulting in an ER visit and treatment, as a result of having to overreach to compensate for the average height while using the stove from a seated position.

She is suffering from skin breakdown due to not having a bathtub, a bath is doctor recommended. She has an inaccessible shower that is aggravating a spinal condition that she is in the process of getting diagnosed. She cannot stand for long periods of time and her skin needs to be submerged in water to heal and prevent this breakdown. Due to it's lack of space Vanessa is unable to set up her therapy equipment that she needs to keep her muscles limber because of aging with C.P. She is supposed to use it on a daily basis and there is simply no room for it to be stored, set up and used. As a result her condition is worsening and she simply cannot continue to go on this way.

Vanessa has had to deal with this apartment for the past 5 years despite remaining on a wait-list for a more accessible unit. As if this wasn't enough to cope with Vanessa's asthma has become drastically worse, she is suffering daily attacks because of a neighbor that smokes pot frequently throughout the day and night. All it takes is one asthma attack for Vanessa to die gasping for breath. In Canada 250 people die from asthma attacks each year. She has been to urgent care to have ventolin masks twice recently because of this.

The landlord has refused to move her despite her care provider asking for a medical transfer. The wait list for these apartments is 10-15 years. Vanessa has come up on the short list once prior but another applicant was selected. Due to the level of crime in these buildings and the fact that you don't really have a choice where you go or the condition of the building (3 refusals for any reason including state of the apartment or accessibility and you are put back at the very bottom of the list!) We have decided that it is best if Vanessa is moved to an accessible home where she can control the air in her living space.

Her only wish is to have a home that she can call her own that will be good for her now and in the future, one that meets her needs. A home that has enough room for her in a neighborhood where smoking is unlikely and where she can focus on her digestive disorder and it's treatment, with a separate room to be used for therapy. A  fully accessible home where Vanessa would be able to permanently live and be safe.

She is frequently afraid in her apartment building because it is in a project and she has been assaulted in the neighborhood. The stress of this situation and having to live in this environment has caused flaring of the gastrointestinal disorder aggravating its symptoms.

I really am worried about her breathing and that one day she simply won't wake up. Be the reason Vanessa will live, breathe and thrive in a safe home that is fully accessible for her needs. 


Thank you for your time and support.

Glen Allardyce

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  • Catherine Hester 
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Organizer

Glen Allardyce 
Organizer
Scarborough, ON
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