One of our chosen charities this year is WAY Widowed and Young, a charity offering peer-to-peer support for people who have been widowed before they turn 52 years old. WAY have kindly shared a members story with us to demonstrate the importance of the service they provide.
Sarah, 41, lives in Redditch with her two children. She joined WAY after her husband died three years ago. Here’s her story:
“My lovely husband Jon went for a run as usual in the evening of 3 September 2019. I was concerned as he was taking longer than usual to come home so I called his mobile a few times. Eventually a policeman answered and told me something had happened. He picked me up and took me to the hospital. Sadly, Jon never made it home. He had a massive heart attack and died. He was 46, I was 38 and our children were 6 and 9.
My caring neighbour told me about WAY Widowed and Young. I joined the charity and logged into the Facebook group after about two weeks of losing Jon. You can never underestimate the amazingly sad connection you make with people in the same sort of situation (nobody’s situation is identical). All barriers break down, there’s no need for small talk. It’s so comforting to have the support from complete strangers.
When I look through my Facebook friends list now, so many of them are fellow widows and widowers who I’ve met through WAY. Some I’ve met through local meet ups and some who have reached out to me or I to them in moments of need. There is always someone around to talk to, whatever time of day.
When your life has been through the level of devastation when you lose someone so young, you’re so grateful for people who just ‘get it’. I’d be lost without my friends at WAY.”
Half of our 2023 donations will go to WAY Widowed and Young and the other half to our second charity, Mind Birmingham, so please support us with all of our charity activities!