Testimonials from Our Elder Friends
Here are a few special messages from our grateful Elder Friends.
“Little Brothers cured me of my disease: the disease of loneliness.”
— Mr. Tremblay, Elder Friend, at the 2015 IMAX Night Out event
I’m not alone anymore: I have a family
“Losing my husband was a terrible thing. He wasn’t just the man I was married to: he was my best friend and confidante for 65 years. He was my only family. When he died, I was left all alone. I didn’t want to live anymore.
Then, one fine spring day, Little Brothers came into my life. Although nobody could ever replace my Maurice, Little Brothers has given me a family. They listen to me, treat me with respect and, most important of all, they make me feel like I’m not alone anymore. Life is worth living again. Thank you!”
— Mrs. Martin, Elder Friend
“When you’re knitting, your worries disappear. And it’s fun, too!”
— Mrs. Belisle, Elder Friend, an active member of the Tricoteuses de Montréal group
“Little Brothers kept me living my life to the fullest! I have always led a very active and stimulating life. A few years ago, when I was told I had macular degeneration, everything turned upside down for me. It was a huge blow to lose my sight, and I started to get depressed. Because I couldn’t get out much anymore, I thought there was nothing left for me to enjoy. My spirits sank. It’s terrible to feel like you’re all alone. But Little Brothers made my days so much brighter. Today, I’m happy because they are in my life. They are my friends.”
— Mrs. Gagné, Elder Friend, Little Brothers – Montreal
I was proud to wear my new outfit to the Christmas party!
“To Sylvie at Little Brothers, I love it when you call me to invite me out to lunch or dinner at Little Brothers. I enjoy seeing the other Elder Friends there, too. I feel right at home in that beautiful house on Garnier Street, and it’s great to get the chance to sing and dance a little. The suit, two shirts and a pair of shoes you gave me were such a wonderful gift. I was proud to wear my new outfit to the Christmas party. Thank you for being there for my birthday and checking in on me regularly while I was in the hospital.”
— Mr. Richard, Elder Friend
My first stay at Juliette Huot Lodge in Oka
“I was so excited when I was told it was my turn to go to Oka. The trip on the Little Brothers bus was lots of fun. When we got there, I saw a beautiful house on a lake, surrounded by trees. It’s so quiet here, especially compared with the hullabaloo of Montreal! A lovely room on the second floor was waiting just for me.
The first meal was excellent and prepared with love by Théona. We also enjoyed a special breakfast made by our head volunteer, Pauline, who whipped up her legendary crêpes for us.
There was plenty for us to do. A magician performed a show for us with his dog. And later that night, Fernand played music and got us to sing and dance. The next day, there was tai chi, crafts and a beanbag toss game outside for us to enjoy as we got to know our new friends.
On the day we left, they gave me a nice framed certificate for my participation. I’m very proud of it. They took a few pictures and then we were on our way. I just know I’ll go back to that wonderful place someday!
A huge thank you to all the volunteers for their attentiveness and friendship. I appreciate it all immensely. It has done me a world of good.”
— Mrs. Raymond, Elder Friend
When my wife died, I knew I couldn’t be happy on my own
“My wife was a wonderful woman. I was devastated when I lost her. I decided to pick up the phone and call Little Brothers, because I knew I needed a family. I couldn’t be happy on my own.
I hope to stay with Little Brothers until I die. They became my second family when I was at my lowest. It is so important to have people in your life.”
— Mr. Hardy, Elder Friend, and Pierre Forcier, volunteer
“It was the best present anyone has ever given me!”
exclaimed an emotional Mr. Grenon, Elder Friend, at the opening of the Longueuil chapter, as he recounted his trip to Les petits frères des Pauvres in France.
“Now, instead of focusing on being alone, I can think back on how much fun I had.”
— Mrs. Richard, in a letter thanking us for granting her wish to go skydiving.
“One day when I was at Little Brothers for lunch, I got to talking with a gentleman who was a photographer. He told me he was going to have to move and was looking for a place to put all of his work. Because I’m a photographer too, his story touched me. We chatted for a while, trying to find a solution, and he told me how he came to be at Little Brothers.
He said his days used to be filled with boredom. Like the Colocs song says, ‘Life is short, but bits of it are long.’ He told me opening his mail was often the highlight of his day. Then one day, a donation form for Little Brothers came in the mail. It wasn’t a personal message – in fact it wasn’t even addressed to anyone. He felt a little ticked off, so he took a pencil and wrote in big sprawling letters: ‘I’M THE ONE WHO NEEDS A DONATION!!!!’ on the form, put it in the envelope and sent it back.
A few days later, there was a knock on the door. It was someone from Little Brothers.”
— Geneviève Deschenes, volunteer, Little Brothers – Montreal
“This is nice. The singer is taking the time to speak to us. Usually when people come in to entertain us, you get the impression that they’re in a hurry to get out the door!”
In a Saguenay residence, in reaction to a performance by a singer and pianist
One last pilgrimage
“Thank you to Little Brothers for helping us make one of our Elder Friends’ fondest dreams come true with a trip to the shrine in Cap-de-la-Madeleine. One of the ladies said: ‘I went there when I was a girl and thought I’d never get the chance to return. I can go in peace now.’”
— Volunteer in Thetford Mines, speaking about a group pilgrimage to Cap-de-la-Madeleine