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June means graduation day for many students in schools, colleges and universities across our city.  It is a time filled with pride, laughter, tears and hope for the future.

At The Ottawa Mission there will be two graduation days in June, and these are always special occasions because they truly demonstrate how our programs are changing lives for the better. Meet just two of the graduates we will be honouring.

Aleem is a young man who had always had a job, but suddenly found himself laid off.  After trying hard to find a new position, he ended up having to collect social assistance. He wanted so much to get back on track but he needed help.  Aleem says he always liked cooking but had no formal training. When he learned about The Mission’s Food Services Training Program he applied right away.  Five months later, he is about to graduate, already has a full time restaurant job, and plans to continue his education in food services.  Aleem’s graduation day is June 5.

Sam is another man who also always worked, mostly as a waiter which he loved. When addiction took control of his life, he ended up where he never expected to be, jobless and homeless.  He prayed to God for guidance and when someone suggested he seek help at The Mission, his decision to do so changed his life.  After 5 months in our LifeHouse residential treatment program Sam is now living in the community and is back working as a waiter.  While staying with us, he also took classes online at our Stepping Stones learning centre and earned the final two credits towards his high school diploma.  Sam’s graduation day is June 12.

On June 5th and 12th you can be sure there will be laughter, tears, and a great deal of pride and hope at The Ottawa Mission.

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