Campaign extended! Our deadline has passed but you can still help.
People with persistent (chronic) pain are often left to fend for themselves, face isolation from family and friends. Working is impossible for many cuasing their self worth and income to drop. Help from the healthcare system is limited and have long wait times to see a specialist. Like medical triage in an emergency the longer it takes to get help the more dificult the condition becomes to treat.
Dick Divine
Help me reach my goal of $10,000 Please contribute now
Pain Self-Management Education
$448 raised
4% of $10k goal
11 contributors
79 Weeks running

My name is Heather Divine, I’ve been living with persistent (chronic) pain for nearly 30 years In 2011, I started the People in Pain Network to help Canadians with persistent pain improve the quality of their life.


Persistent pain is invisible to most family members and friends as people in pain tend to withdraw from active social lives while search for a solution.


We need your help today to make a difference.


It’s very feasible that you know at least one person in your circle of friends and family who after a car accident, an operation or an illness did not appear to recover completely. These people also stopped their regular activities and you just don’t see as much of them as before.

The number of times this self exile quietly occurs within the Canadian population is startling. According to stats Canada, 1 in 5 Canadians are living with persistent pain with the majority going it alone, that’s approximately 7.3 million.


My own story is not that different from the average Canadian living with pain. I was an operating room nurse, married with two activechildren, when, after 4 surgeries, scar tissue developed in my spine resulting in burning pain down both legs. I worked for as long as I could before I had to leave the workplace. I began to realize that not only does pain effect your physical wellbeing it overloads the brain to an extent that your thoughts become muddled, memory is affected, and your self worth is negatively impacted.


After a number of years spent looking for a solution it finally dawned on me that it was up to me to help myself.,It became clear that he healthcare system is also struggling to keep up with the demand to provide care for people living with persistent pain.


I was lucky to have a doctor that understood how pain can affect the body, I learned a great deal from Dr. Hayes. This knowledge and understanding gave the confidence to start to change how I approached my day and was the beginning of my new normal.


How does the People in Pain Network help those living with pain to help themselves?

  • We establish ongoing peer-led pain self-management education and support (or PSMES for short) groups in local communities to meet the ongoing needs of people, and their families who live with pain.
  • This includes
    • Training the peer leaders in pain self-management and group facilitation.
    • Providing ongoing support for each leader via our monthly (online) meetings.
    • Encourage the use of local medical experts to present at the group meetings.
    • Helping to plan their future group educational topics.
    • Manage all meeting information communication to the group members
    • Manage their web page
    • Provide access to our Pain ToolKit and our online resources.
    • We work collaboratively with many other healthcare providers and organizations.


Our services are free to all attendees and people can join a group without a medical referral or wait times.

We do all this without any government funding. We have been operating with the help from donations from corporate organizations but as they restructure their grant polices they are moving to targeted project based funding and are seldom providing operational dollars. Ongoing programs are not covered by targeted project based funding, and this is why we are asking for you help.


A recent lack of funding has helped us to create a very lean operation that expends 96% of the money raised on the establishing of new groups and the sustaining of existing pain self-management groups. We are 100% volunteer run and out of the eight board members seven have persistent pain, 100% of our group facilitators have persistent pain, this ensures we understand and maintain our 100% focus on meeting the needs of our members.The funds that are raised goes to providing meeting spaces, educational resources, online resources, advertisement, toll free number, and communications technology.


Our program is helping people rebuild their lives, learn how to increase their physical and social activities and re-engage with their families and communities. As they understand more about what is happening with their bodies they can tell their story with confidence and improve their partnership with their healthcare providers,


Living with pain can be overwhelming at times and members have reported that they have a suicide plan that they can access if needed. Members now reportthat they have put their suicide plan away because they now have hope and confidence that withsupport and education they can manage the more difficult days and that they are not alone.


One of our members reported that when they started in a group they could hardly walk 100 metres without having to rest. After learning how the brain protects the body they can now walk three to four kilometres a day.


Through a greater understanding of what is happening to them members have reduced the number of times they visit an emergency room to receive care. They have improved their communication with their healthcare providers making for more productive outcomes. Not only is the program helping Canadians it is reducing the burden on the healthcare system.


Every donation, no matter how small, will help us to help more of the 7.3 million Canadians.


Please donate now, to help more Canadians living better with pain.


Thank you for your time.



See all activity13


Subscribe to receive updates by email.


Meet the team

Do you believe in our cause? Join our team!
Position Total raised

People just like you

People just like you have raised $179,000,000+ for causes they and their friends care about.

Start your own campaign
Recent contributions