Sunday, June 14, 2009

Angels In Disquise

I have always believed in angels but sometimes there are angels in disguise.
I met Charles about 2 years ago in my chatroom I instinctly knew that he must be housebound and very lonely and so I made him chat monitor. He came to me asking if I would help him one day. He had been robbed and he told me about his living conditions. Charles has cerebral palsy, in a wheelchair, and unable to go to lock his door at the bottom of the stairs. He seldom saw the outdoors and his meagre meal of once a day was hardly enough to sustain a child, yet he was 41.
I tried very hard to bring help to him but failed everytime. Noone usually wants to hear about disabled persons. A kind member, Bob from Michigan tried to help as well calling in the Salvation Army. They did their best to help but this avenue came to a dead end as well. Finally, the right phone call brought in Faithful Friends and with an angel called Jody to head the organizing ..Charles was now safe and sound living downstairs in a clean and safe enviroment. I am not quite ready to tell the extent of this story but please stay tuned and you will come to know how the City Of Marion, Indiana saved a disabled person with cerebral palsy.

Thursday, April 9, 2009


November 14, Louise Maxwell founder of Soulful Encounters made it onto Nite Lite Live..and she did an all nighter with host David Kwon answering phone calls from people who were depressed and were searching for some help. It had a theme "Do You Ever Think About The Disabled". It was a very inspirational nite with disabled persons or relatives of the disabled calling in. Also in November two Soulful Encounter's members met for the first time with cameras following them. Soulful Encounters used this on Dating 201 by Rogers in Toronto, Ontario.
Soulful Encounters made it onto three radio stations in the United States as well. So we are slowly but surely gaining momentum. Let us see what happens next. Stay tuned!

Friday, October 10, 2008


Soulful Encounters has exciting news for the members. Louise Maxwell, founder of Soulful will be on television Tuesday October 14, 2008 on the following channels for the show 100 Huntley Street:

In Canada

Global TV 9:00—10:00 A.M.

CTS 9:00---10:00 A.M.

CTS 9:00---10:00 P.M.

CTS 1:00----2:00 A.M. (early hours of the 15th)

In United States

NRB Network in the United States is available from DIRECTTV, Channel 378 at 5:00 P.M. ET

For for a more complete listing please go to click onto Television and then 100 Huntley Street and then on click onto Times and Stations.

Soulful Encounters is always looking for exciting ways to bring you more members. Tune in!

If you have any questions please feel free to contact Louise Maxwell at



Unique Online Dating Site Celebrates First Marriage
Site Makes Dreams Come True For Persons with Disabilities

Contact: Louise Maxwell
London, ON -- Finding someone special to live ‘happily ever after’ with is a goal most of us wish to achieve in our lifetime. But what if you are physically or medically disabled? Then the dream of finding true love can seem impossible to attain. Obstacles such as isolation, mobility issues, low self-esteem and social discrimination can prevent people with disabilities from making romantic connections. Rejected and marginalized, many just give up, feeling that the odds of finding ‘that special someone’ are just too slim.
But recently, two people managed to beat those odds. Barbara and Sid* both have physical disabilities. Barbara has Multiple Sclerosis, (she uses a scooter and a walker to transport herself about) while Sid is dealing with a chronic heart condition. Barbara originates from Ontario, Canada, while Sid is from Indiana, in the United States. Yet the two met and were married recently in a beautiful outdoor ceremony at the Smoky Mountains in Tennessee.
So how did the couple come together despite all their obstacles? They met at Soulful Encounters, a unique online dating site for people with disabilities. The couple’s marriage is a landmark event – it is the first marriage to happen between people who met on the site.
Says the newlywed Barbara: “I finally have the family I have always craved. I am so grateful for Soulful Encounters. Without it, what medium would God have used to bring Sid and I together?”

Soulful Encounters administrator Louise Maxwell is also thrilled with the event: “I am so pleased for the two of them. For years it has been my goal to facilitate this type of opportunity for people who are disabled. I hope that there will be many more marriages to follow.”

Maxwell has long had a vision of making dreams come true for people with disabilities. During her previous career managing medical offices, Maxwell recognized the loneliness that punctuated the lives of many of the patients she met. So she set out to do something about it. In 2007, she created Soulful Encounters – an online networking site for the medically disabled and differently-abled. Says Maxwell, "It's a community, a place where friendships begin for people who are typically overlooked or forgotten.”

Conceptualized as a type of “Facebook for the Disabled,” the site was the first of its kind. It immediately became successful – in one short year it attracted close to 2000 members from all over North America, with membership still increasing.

However, Soulful Encounters is not just your average networking site. It is also a major lifeline and support system for persons with disabilities. Along with the usual profiles, chat rooms and forum features, the site has a resident pharmacist, social worker, psychologist, and pastor available to answer questions or offer counseling. As well, Maxwell takes a very “hands on” approach to her site, working hard to keep the community clean, wholesome and free from scammers. Disabled herself after a series of failed back surgeries, Maxwell’s work is fueled by empathy and understanding. She personally answers all E-mail from members and is always willing to lend an ear to someone in trouble. Daily, she provides compassionate support, practical advice or a cheery telephone call of encouragement to those who are feeling down. Often, she helps to find food, shelter and medicine for those who are in dire straits.

But for today, Maxwell is celebrating. The marriage of Barbara and Sid was a significant victory – not only for the couple themselves but for all persons with disabilities. As Maxwell notes: “Barbara and Sid’s marriage has sparked the hopes and dreams of other members on the site. Their story proves that no matter how difficult the circumstances, marriage is still an achievable goal for people with disabilities.”

Newlyweds Barbara and Sid agree, adding that Soulful Encounters was the doorway to a whole new life for them. When asked if she thinks Soulful Encounters could help other people with disabilities find love and marriage too, Barbara nods confidently and smiles, stating: “Fairy tales can come true if you keep the faith….”


For further information, visit the Soulful Encounters website at or call Louise Maxwell at E-mail:

*Names have been changed in order to protect the privacy of the couple

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Soulful Encounters What Does This Mean?

Soulful Encounters means beautiful souls awaiting to be your friend! Soulful is for love..Come to www.SoulfulEncounters and you will see that you can fill your soul with lasting bliss!

And Now For The Rest Of The Story

they have a dolphin adventure where you can go in the water with them. Then we talked about the Stat~ Fair-Kenny Rogers and the Oakridge Boys were going to be there. So in August I jumped in my car and drove to Indianapolis. My friends were all worried about me driving down by myself, and for me it was a huge leap of faith. We had a fantastic time."
Londoner Carole McFadden has no disability, so she never dreamed that she would find romance on Soulful Encounters. But she has after connect¬ing with Kevin Saichuk, who lives in Burnaby B.C. As the parent and primary caregiver of a 25 year-old daughter with spina hydrocephalus, McFadden was simply looking for someone to talk to, someone she could relate to because their experience waS similar to her daughter's. She has made a number of new friends through the website, but says, "for some reason Kevin and I clicked." The two have chatted and talked using a web cam, but have yet to meet in person. Saichuk, who has brittle bone disease, isn't fussy about flying, says McFadden, but they are hoping to meet up in Winnipeg sometime in February.
As with any Internet dating site, people need to be cautious when they meet someone online because there are a lot of scammers in cyberspace, says Maxwell. As the site's administrator, she is very protective of Soulful Encounters' members, and has put a number of filters and safe¬guards in place to quickly identify and eliminate scammers and spammers.
Maxwell is far more than the site's administrator, though. For many members she has become a mentor, supporter and friend. "I welcome everyone personally, and I spend a lot of time with people on the phone," says Maxwell, who takes the time to understand each person's personal situation and draw out their strengths and talents.
Maxwell first worked with people with disabilities when she was in her early twenties and on staff in a medical office. From the outset she was determined to

treat them as people first. "I made a hab¬it of speaking directly with people with physical challenges, instead of have their parent or caregiver speak for them."
After being involved in a car accident when she was in her late thirties, Maxwell underwent eight different back surgeries. Being housebound for nearly 10 years, she experienced the isolation and frustration that many people with disabilities encounter on a daily basis.
The inspiration for Soulful Encounters came from a young woman Maxwell met who was born with no arms and had resigned herself to never having a romantic relationship. At around the same time, one of Maxwell's sons was exploring dating sites on the Internet. That planted the seed in Maxwell's mind: why not a dating site that catered specifically to people with physical disabilities? "It drives me nuts that some people think disabled people do not need physical and emotional intimacy," says Maxwell. "That's not true."
Launched in 2005, Soulful Encounters logged almost 2,400 members by 2006. That year Maxwell began to use a new website hosting company and during the transition to the new service provider she lost many of the member contacts. The website was restructured and relaunched in May, 2006, and since then has attracted over 600 members that range in age from 21 to 87, with the majority in their forties and fifties. Most are North American-more than half in the U.S.-but there are also members in Australia, New Zealand, Egypt, France, Denmark and Sweden.
Chad McLinchey was Soulful Encounter's first member, joining in April 2005 . He had been looking for web¬sites where he could connect with people with disabilities and had not found any Canadian sites until he happened upon Maxwell's. McLinchey isn't housebound or isolated-he gets out and about on a regular basiS-and plays drums in a
rock band-but he enjoys talking with other people with disabilities who share common experiences. And at 27, he still holds hope that he might find romance one day.
Because he has dystonia, a movement disorder that leaves him with minimal movement control, McLinchey has to rely on others to type for him and only visits Soulful Encounters about three times a week. For other members, the site is a daily lifeline that connects them to online friendships. Read the website's testimonial page and you quickly under¬stand the impact that Soulful Encounters and Maxwell have had on their day-to¬day lives. Says one member, "Louise made me feel worthy and confident ... not trapped and sad. I have never felt so good about myself in my entire life."
"Whether they date or not is secondary now," says Maxwell. "What is more important is the way they feel empowered, the way everyone is embracing each other, and the huge support system that people have developed."

Soulful Encounters Is Dancing!!!

Louise Maxwell started Soulful Encounters as an Internet dating service for the disabled. What she ended up with is so much more BY KYMWOLFE
City Life Magazine February/March Edition 2008

LOUISE MAXWELL INITIALLY LAUNCHED Soulful Encounters as a dating site for the medically disabled and differently abled, but it has quickly evolved into a unique online community that goes far beyond the role of matchmaker. It is a support system for people (and their parents) with disabilities; it's a forum where members can get expert advice from psychologists, pastors, lawyers and other professionals; and it is a virtual meeting place where people can find friendship-and, in some cases, romance.
That's what happened for Londoner Bonnie Maas, who met Ed Allen through Soulful Encounters and spent this past Christmas with him in Walton, Indiana. Maas, 49, who has multiple sclerosis, had previously been on regular dating sites and says, "I met some really nice guys, but there was no chemistry." She joined Soulful Encounters early in 2007 and 50-year-old Allen, who has a heart condition, joined in February. The two began to chat and email back and forth, but it wasn't until Allen went on vacation during the summer that Maas realized how much she looked forward to his messages.
"I missed him, so I sent him a message: 'Just wondering, did you fall off the face of the earth or what?'" she chuckles. "I found out later he was rock climbing and in fact there were a couple of times where he almost did fall am" Once Allen returned the two began to phone each other and that led to an invitation to visit in August.
"I've always wanted to swim with the dolphins, and Ed suggested I check out the Indianapolis Zoo because (to be continued)