Please watch more of our video testimonials on YouTube.
"I’m a c-3 ventilator quadriplegic. After my injury almost 20 years ago I went home from the hospital to live with my father. For the next 14 years my father was my full-time attendant. Although I was grateful, I also felt overwhelmed with the burden I had placed on my family. My father was willing to continue as my caregiver for the rest of his life; however, even though I was forever grateful to my father, he deserved to have his life back. I was afraid of leaving home, but, I made the decision to move into a nursing home, which was my only choice. I soon learned that where I was living was no place for a young person like me…this is where the story of my rescue began. I believe divine intervention took place 2 months after I moved. The primary physician referred me to Mary Williams and my life changed forever.
Today I am embarking on an exciting and fulfilling career in finance and engaged to be married to a wonderful woman. FTL’s training and support has resulted in an amazing new life with opportunities that I never would have dreamed were possible."
"Having failed miserably at my first attempt at rebuilding my life after a spinal cord injury that left me paralyzed as a quadriplegic in 1992, I experienced a devastating break up of my family and ended up living in a “traditional” nursing home, I can say without reservation that the founders of Freedom To Live Foundation saved my life. I was suffering depression, isolation and was in terrible physical condition when FTLʼs founder, somehow learned of my plight. With expert guidance and support from FTL’s independence program my health improved and soon I was receiving vital training that would put me on a pathway to re-enter the world and hoping to once again become a happy, healthy, confident man not intimidated by my status as a “disabled” American. I am a living testimony of the “life giving” work that FTL does…thank you Freedom To Live!"
- Jack Alison
"After meeting Mary Williams and her daughter Sian 1 year ago my life changed immediately. I had been living in a nursing home since my accident 5 years ago and had so many questions. Mary and Sian confidently answered all of my concerns of how FTL was going to do something that everybody else, including my doctors and case manager, said was impossible…I learned that FTL could provide a pathway to an independent life living at home. Over the next 6 months Mary and Sian coordinated everything for my transfer out of the nursing home and on May 1, 2012 I moved and began my first step toward gaining independence. I have HOPE for my life now. As a mother of a beautiful 15-year old daughter I finally believe my dreams of raising her and being there as she grows and graduates from school will come true."
- Amy Labagnara
"Always having to stress, fight, and wonder where your basic life necessities are going to come from is a huge burden and makes living with spinal cord injury much harder. I’m very thankful for my life, my friends and family, and many others who have helped me in numerous ways. I know from personal experience Mary and Sian have huge hearts and there are not even words to describe how much a foundation like this would mean to so many people."
- Ben Boggs
"The Freedom to Live organization has changed my family’s life as well as my daughter, Patty’s with your amazing talents and passion for what you do. Keep up the great work and thank you!"
- John Schroeder
"Hi my name is Erik Gholson Williams. I am a recipient of Freedom To Live. I have been receiving life changing assistance from FTL for the last 4 years. I've been a 6-7 quadriplegic for 17 years and Mary Williams and Sian Welch has been an Angels in my life.
The first two years I was with FTL I had several surgeries and was in bed for over a year and they stepped in and helped pay my rent in a big way. They took all the pressure off me worrying about how I was going to survive to allowing me to put all my energies into healing my body but also allowed me to grow spiritually.
FTL is truly a special unique life changing organization. Once I got healthier they still support me every month which is much needed assistance. I get SSD and it's just not enough to cover my monthly expenses. The monies they assist me with rent every month allows me to buy just enough food for the month and helps cover my utilities as well.
Without it I wouldn't be able to survive and would be in a nursing home which I stayed in before I met Mary Williams. FTL allows me to live in my own apartment and live a healthy full life. Most of all it builds positive self-esteem within my spirit. FTL is like no other organization out there.
In closing FTL is doing God’s work in a beautiful way that has major impact on lives. My life since being a part of FTL has giving me the mental and spiritual Freedom to continue on my journey in life while being in a chair. I will be forever grateful for FTL Sian Welch and Mary Williams."
- Erik Gholson Williams
"About a year after graduating from community college, I was working as a welder full time. The week-end after 4th of July 1988 I attended a wedding & while driving home afterwards I ran off the road while tuning my radio & flipped my truck end-over-end twice before rolling it & being ejected out the rear window.
I woke up on a ventilator paralyzed from C4 down due to multiple fractured vertebras in my neck. After 9 more months in the hospital, the last three due to the fact that no nursing home would accept me on a ventilator, I was saved from the hopelessness by Mary Williams.
She & a fellow nurse traveled 500 miles north of there LA area facility to meet with me & explain that there was hope. Two weeks later I was loaded on to a small airplane from an ambulance and flown to Southern California.
I was met there by inspirational people who knew what they were doing. I felt I had hope & was not disappointed. Caregivers, both experienced RN's & caring volunteers, including Sian, got me out of bed & into the community on a daily basis. Within a year they had me off the ventilator & 6 months later I was living in the community on my own, with the limited public aid available & generous support from Mary's organization.
This is when I first experienced the need this foundation is going to serve. Accessible & affordable housing is simply not available in most areas. But there are programs that I have used that can fix this to an extent.
Through hard work & perseverance I was able to move from the Mary subsidized housing into my own condo. after 12 years of payments & many small improvements I sold it & purchased a 2 acre property back in my hometown in 2009.
I now live in my own 3 bedroom home with a guest house on the same lot rented to one of my 3 caregivers. I have a friend living in a RV on the property that takes care of my yard & the many fruit, nut & shade trees we planted. I raise chickens & vegetables & live comfortably enjoying the abundance that life brings.
I have been threw many highs & lows over the last 20+ years & have found many useful government & private programs that combined with FTL will make a difference in peoples lives."
"I will never forget the day I met Mary Williams as I was laying in my bed not knowing what the future had in store for me but as I got to talking to her she was telling me about her company and all the good things that she was doing for people in my situation as I kept talking and letting her know about my little daughter and how I thought my life was over little did I know my life was going to take a dramatic turn by going to her company which was called New Start Homes. Boy was it she has save my life in so many ways not only with her kind heart but with all the love she has to give."
"From darkness and despair to light and hope. From surviving to thriving. From dependence to independence. Freedom To Live changes lives in such profound ways, it’s hard to describe. When I learned that my friend, Nathan, had been admitted to the program, I broke-down and cried. I cried because I knew that Nathan would have the chance to get the training and knowledge to live as independently as possible. He would get the support to follow the path that God has laid out for him. Freedom To Live puts people back in control of their lives. It gives people back their dreams. Sian and Mary literally change lives. I thank you, Sian and Mary, from the bottom of my heart."
- Mike Ferrari