The Overcoming Obstacles Handbook – Victoria, B.C. edition

Local resources. Inspiring stories. Practical advice.

Whether it’s physical, financial, professional or psychological, everybody goes through tough times in their lives. Josh Martin was 28 years old when he experienced his biggest challenge yet: an aggressive form of leukemia. Inspired by his journey, the Overcoming Obstacles Handbook is a free collection of real-life stories, practical advice and local resources in the Victoria community geared at helping people who are facing adversity.


Scroll below to download your free copy and to find local resources.

Sponsored by
This project is made possible by the generous support of the following local businesses

At Armour Addiction Services we have incorporated trauma and expressive arts therapy into our individualized addiction recovery programs. We provide affordable, holistic recovery programming that will fit your schedule. You can live at home and keep working! We are not a 12-Step program – We specialize in Trauma! ~ 250.619.9324

Thrive is a small boutique studio that offers Stott Pilates, Barre and Yoga, massage therapy and Acupuncture. We pride ourselves on quality instruction, mindful movement, attention to detail and personalized classes. We want you to come and feel comfortable starting where ever you are with an amazing community of like minded people.  Come and see what makes Thrive different from the rest.

Victoria Expressive Therapies offers two services supporting children and families. Engaging in expressive art therapy, children can creatively address their emotional challenges such as family changes, grief and loss, anxiety and depression. In the cutting edge Learning in Motion program, children learn brain-based movements that, in rewiring the brain, lead to lasting breakthroughs in their academic challenges at school. Contact me for a free consultation!

MokSana Yoga & Healing Center offers drop-in yoga classes, a Yoga-Alliance certified 250-hour Yoga Teacher Training course, continuing education workshops for yoga teachers and students, healing arts practitioners, yoga retreats, and retail. At our facility, freedom – or moksha – is experienced through the practices of traditional and contemporary approaches to yoga, meditation, and holistic health.

Need a counselor? Try Art Therapy / 250-883-0750 / Victoria BC
Art Therapy combines visual art making and psychotherapy in a creative process aimed at improving a person’s physical, mental, and emotional well being.  People of all ages can benefit from art therapy and previous art experience is not necessary. 
I help adults and children with anxiety, depression, life transitions, grief, and loss.  Please contact me for a free consultation to see if art therapy is right for you

Play is a child’s first language and a window into their inner world. As a registered play therapist, Charlotte, along with her team of clinicians, offer a unique approach to working with children, teens and parents. Using a combination of art and play-based therapies, animal-assisted therapy, talk therapy and parent support, Charlotte and her team create a safe space for kids of all ages to discover their best selves.

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Community resources in the Victoria area

One of the most important lessons Josh learned from his health crisis was the importance of community. Whether it was accessing peer support programs, using the Cancer Society’s shuttle service to get to appointments or tapping into educational materials from the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, community resources played a big role in his success.

Whatever obstacle you face in life — personally, professionally or otherwise — be sure to consider the resources available in your community. Fortunately, the Victoria area boasts all kinds of organizations and programs focused on helping folks overcome a variety of obstacles.

Below, you’ll find information about some of them. This listing is by no means exhaustive, but it will hopefully give you a flavour of the kinds of resources available in your own backyard.

Mental health

Victoria Island Crisis Society
24- hour crisis line: 1-888-494-3888
Crisis text services (6pm-10pm): 250-800-3806

(suicide prevention education and support)

Crisis Intervention & Suicide Prevention Centre of BC
Mental health support line: 310-6789

Here to Help
(BC Partners for Mental health & Substance Use Information)

Online crisis support for youth

Online crisis support for adults

Suicide prevention helpline
1800SUICIDE (1-800-784-2433)

Mental health and substance abuse services
(Island Health)

Local therapists and counsellors

Local anxiety therapists and counsellors

Local depression therapists and counsellors

BC Association for Living Mindfully

Physical health

Find a local physiotherapist

Find a local registered massage therapist

Find a local chiropractor

Alzheimer Society of B.C.

BC Cancer – Victoria

Local cancer support groups and programs

Canadian Cancer Society – B.C.

Victoria Disability Resource Centre

Services for People with Disabilities

Seniors Serving Seniors

Victoria BC Services for Seniors
(directory of local resources)

Health & Home Care Society of BC

Families and individuals

Family Services of Greater Victoria

Local divorce therapists and counsellors

BC Bereavement Helpline

Local grief therapists and counsellors

The Victoria Youth Empowerment Society

LGBT resources

Trans Vancouver Island
(resources for transgender and gender diverse people)

YMCA/YWCA of Vancouver Island

Emergency support and shelters

Directory of shelters in Victoria

Victoria Women’s Transition House Society
24-hour crisis line: 250-385-6611

Cool Aid Shelters

The Cridge Transition House for Women

Employment and financial

Local career guidance counsellors and therapists

(employment resources)

Get Youth Working

Credit Counselling Society – Victoria


Inter-Cultural Association of Greater Victoria

Victoria Immigrant and Refugee Centre Society


Victoria Evening Newcomers Club for Women

Victoria Region Men’s and Newcomers Club

Want to help others in your community overcome obstacles? Here are few local opportunities to consider:

Volunteer Victoria
(local volunteer opportunities)

Blood donor clinics
(search “Victoria” for nearby clinics)

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Victoria

Habitat for Humanity Victoria