A Beacon of Hope: How HFUW Helped Sheila Through Financial Hardship

Financial assistance for utility bills

At Heart of Florida United Way (HFUW), we are profoundly moved and grateful to be able to support individuals like Sheila.* When Sheila reached out to us in her time of need and sent us this incredible letter, we knew we had to share her story. Her words beautifully capture the essence of our mission and the impact we strive to make every day. 

Dear United Way Team, 

I hope this letter finds you well. My name is Sheila, and I recently had the honor of receiving assistance from your organization for my utility bills. I am writing to express my deepest gratitude for the support you have extended to me during a time when my hope was waning, and the light at the end of the tunnel seemed dim. 

For the past few months, I have been grappling with financial instability, tirelessly searching for steady employment since October. To make ends meet, I ventured into doing courier runs. However, circumstances reached a point where even that became unsustainable due to the lack of funds for fuel. The mounting pressure of my utility bills, specifically a light bill of $146.97, added to the stress, making each day a battle against despair. 

In my moment of need, I turned to you, and without hesitation, you extended a hand of support. The news that my application for assistance was approved and that a check would be sent directly to the power company brought me an immense sense of relief and comfort. Your generosity has not only helped alleviate my financial burden but has also reignited my hope and determination to overcome these challenging times. 

The grace and compassion you have shown me are more than just a gesture of help; they are a beacon of hope for those struggling to find their footing. Your organization’s commitment to uplifting individuals and communities is a testament to the profound impact collective kindness and support can have on someone’s life. 

As I navigate through this period of uncertainty, your help serves as a crucial pillar of support, enabling me to focus on securing steady employment and restoring stability in my life. Once I am back on my feet, I am eager to give back to the community and support United Way’s mission. It is the least I can do to show my appreciation for the lifeline you have provided me. 

Please accept my heartfelt thanks for your generosity, understanding, and the vital work you do every day. Your dedication to helping those in need is truly inspirational, and I am profoundly grateful to have been a recipient of your kindness. 

With warmest regards, Sheila 


Sheila’s story is a powerful testament to the life-changing impact of HFUW’s support. After months of searching for steady employment and trying to make ends meet through courier runs, Sheila faced a critical moment when she couldn’t pay her utility bills. The burden of a $146.97 light bill added immense pressure and despair to her daily life. It was during this challenging period that she discovered HFUW. 

Sheila expressed her gratitude for the seamless process and the immediate support that prevented any lapse in her electricity. The assistance provided by HFUW not only alleviated her financial burden but also reignited her hope and determination to overcome the challenges she faced. 

I’m grateful and humbled. Once I get back to where we have free time, I would love to support you through volunteer work”


Sheila’s story is just one example of how HFUW stands as a pillar of support for individuals facing financial hardship. By offering immediate assistance and connecting individuals to essential resources, we help our neighbors navigate through difficult times and work toward a brighter future. 

Heart of Florida United Way is committed to supporting the health, financial stability, education, and basic needs of Central Florida families. Sheila’s story is a beautiful reminder of the impact we can make together. If you or someone you know is in need of assistance, please reach out to us. And if you are able, consider supporting our mission to uplift our community through donations or volunteer work. 

Together, we can continue to be a beacon of hope for those in need. 

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*Sheila’s last name and likeness is not shown to protect her anonymity.