My name is Nichola Bynoe. I came to Canada 17 years ago when I was just 21 years old. I did not come with my family and have no family here. 5 years after coming to Canada I had a son named Isaiah. At the age of 6 he was diagnosed with A.D.H.D. and L.D. My life went downhill from there. At that time I was about to become a mother for the second time. It was a very confusing time for me. I tried everything to help my son. I took him to every agency out there – AIDS Links, YouthDel, CAMH and HollyBloorview. Two years later, due to his behavioural problems, Isaiah went to a group home.
A little while later someone told me about Tropicana and said that they take a different approach to counselling. They specialized in counselling people from different ethnic backgrounds. The first time I visited Tropicana I had a chip on my shoulder because I had already gone to so many agencies where they did not understand what I was dealing with. I met a counsellor named Amy who helped me work through things. A few years later, when Isaiah was a bit older and Amy was no longer at Tropicana, she suggested that I try them again and enroll my son in some of their programs.
When I returned to Tropicana my counsellor, Florette, and my son got along very well. She was able to help him speak up and express his feelings and he was able to get the support he needed. He attended the Youth Start program. For the first time, after going to so many agencies, I was able to speak with someone who I felt understood what I was going through. My son still has some challenges, but he is doing very well. Thanks to Tropicana my son and I were able to finally get the support we needed.