“It’s a whole new world for me now. I’m a whole new person.”
– Stan Howe
At 79 years old, Stan Howe feels like he has a whole new lease on life.
In late 2017, the Fredericton man was in his backyard when he took a sharp pain in his leg. He shook it off, and didn’t think much more about it.
The next day, though, it came back. This time, he collapsed. Friends helped him to the car and took him to hospital.
Soon enough, he would discover it was a blood clot that would cost him that leg.
For more than two years, he was in rehabilitation. A prosthetic leg would be a breakthrough for him but he couldn’t afford it, and his efforts to get funding from the provincial government to help with the costs stalled.
He contacted Ability New Brunswick to see if we could help. Rebecca, a rehabilitation counsellor, tried reapplying on his behalf to the Health Services Prosthetics Program through the Department of Social Development.
The application was rejected because he lived in the basement of a house where his ex-wife resided – the department ruled that she must be financially supporting him.
Rebecca stepped in and advocated for an exception for his case – clearly, the two were living separately. Eventually, the department approved funding for the prosthetic, which Stan received in March 2021.
Rebecca also helped Stan benefit from the federal Disability Tax Credit.
“Ability New Brunswick went through all the channels to help me out. They helped me tremendously,” Stan says.
While he has a journey ahead yet in becoming more accustomed to the prosthetic, having it has given him a whole new level of independence, confidence and freedom.
“It’s a whole new life and a whole new world for me now. I’m a whole new person,” he says. “I can’t ask for more than my health and my life.”