“Together we are taking on the world.”
“Together, we are taking on the world.” These are the words that single mom Angela, shares often with her 3-year old daughter, Madison to describe their bond. These are also words that illustrate perfectly the strength and resilience of single parent families who visit 1UP every day. Angela treasures the close relationship she shares with her daughter and the time they spend together doing things like riding taxi ferries, visiting the wharf and making art. Her priority is ensuring that Madison feels safe and loved, and that they are a ‘home’ for each other.
Angela became a single parent when Madison was 18 months old and remembers feeling overwhelmed and isolated by her new circumstances. While grateful to be able to lean on family members for support, she also felt a strong need to connect with additional resources and individuals who could understand her experience. An online search led her to 1UP, where she found exactly what she was looking for. She describes her first visit to 1UP as one of “warmth”, “openness” and “non-judgment”.
At first, asking for help wasn’t easy for Angela. She remembers feeling that she should be able to manage on her own. When she did make the decision to reach out, however, she says that she transitioned from feeling vulnerable to empowered. Most useful to her is the help she received navigating systems such as legal help, which can be both costly and daunting. She has also appreciated access to free counselling, free practical support like clothing, food, books, and toys, and the support of staff and other single parents who help her feel grounded and less alone.
“Accessing services at 1UP has the power to change someone’s day or week” she says, “like in those moments when a parent feels they would otherwise not be able to get their child what they need.” Angela feels comfortable bringing her daughter to 1UP whenever they are in need of a special item, like a raincoat, boots for school or simply to connect with other families.
Angela is thankful for the support she has received through 1UP and our single parent community, and hopes for an opportunity to ‘pay it forward’ in the future as a mentor to a single mom through 1UP’s Moms and Mentors Program. Through experience, Angela has learned the power of parents helping parents and the direct impact this support has on building resilient individuals, families and communities.