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Isolated by loss, this senior finds new meaning through community

Affordable housing is more than just a roof over someone's head. It's about changing lives. It's about people like Cora.

An Asian-American woman wearing a black and white shirt sits in a wooden chair

Cora (age 83), an immigrant from the Philippines, enjoyed a successful career in the field of education and research, eventually settling with her husband and daughter in Las Vegas, Nevada. Following her husband's death in 2003, she lived alone in her home for 11 years. Even with occasional visits from her daughter, she often felt sad and lonely. On Christmas Day 2014, her daughter died unexpectedly and Cora fell into a deep depression, fueled by her grief.

A friend told Cora about Nevada HAND's affordable independent-living communities for seniors. Although initially traumatized by the thought of moving from her home into a smaller apartment, Cora made the change anyway and began adjusting to her new life. In time, she began to appreciate and enjoy the services and amenities the community offered. She established friendships and now has neighbors she can count on. Educated in psychology and philosophy, Cora has resumed her writing and has a personal mission to teach and spread compassion.

Cora knows that, like herself, many of her neighbors have lived rich and fulfilling lives, and many also are dealing with loss. For some, it is the loss of loved ones, either through death or distance. For others, it is the loss of health, independence or a sense of purpose. Cora supports them all, offering friendship and a compassionate ear.

Cora's transformation has been remarkable. She now is well known and beloved by fellow residents, and states that she "has been transformed from a lonely person into someone who sees beauty in life." She describes her new life as "like heaven."

The Nevada HAND staff believes that home matters. Affordable housing is indeed more than just a roof over your head. It is community. And it is home.

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