“I know I’m not going to walk at Harvard, but CitiWide is my Princeton.” YVONNE
IN 2006, I WAS DIAGNOSED with aplastic anemia. Basically, my body had stopped producing blood. A couple years later, a friend of mine brought me to CitiWide – to eat. I was maybe 96 pounds when CitiWide met me. I had so many issues it was unbelievable. I came here and I would just sleep, and sleep, and sleep, because when you don’t make blood, you don’t have any energy. The staff were concerned, diligent, and there for me constantly. I began to come regularly, and they fed me every day, even gave me food to take home. Whatever I needed, they had it, and they had it in surplus. I remember getting sick here once, but I would not go to the doctor. The staff said that I was going if they had to drag me there themselves. And they did. We got in a cab, and they took me to the hospital. CitiWide has been my mother, my father, my grandfather; they’ve been every type of force I needed to keep me in line. And not just for me, for everyone.
These days, I come to CitiWide for more than free food. This place gives me something to do, and better, something to focus on. I just graduated from the Herizen peer training program, which gives me a real sense of accomplishment. It means that, for some part of my vocabulary, I actually know what I’m talking about.
Overall, I’d say this place has transformed me into a more responsible person. I have a new respect for my time these days, and I’ve also developed a new respect for drugs. I know I’m not going to walk at Harvard, but CitiWide is my Princeton.
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