Now that I’m settled into my new home I am feeling the most positive I have done in years. I had initially been studying for a postgrad qualification but instead, due to struggling with various issues such as depression and addiction, I found myself homeless and at my lowest point.
Moving here has given me the opportunities to make a fresh start and focus on engaging with a wide range of support. Most importantly it has meant I could meet genuine, caring people who are helping me to move forwards from the negative behaviors I had become used to.
Initially, I was a little apprehensive; over-the-moon to be offered somewhere to live, yet not knowing what to expect and aware that I’d need to take a very big step forwards. I was vaguely conscious of the facts I’d be moving in with people I didn’t know, would be committing to real change and there was a Christian background. But I was made very welcome, given help to plan my own recovery and started improving quickly. Already I have been offered access to so many projects, support groups, recovery programs and encouragement to constructively engage with the local community again. More so than any hostel or other supported accommodation I was welcomed into a proper home.
It’s been a long time since I felt a part of society with a life worth living, and I currently feel like I’m becoming myself again and I’m really excited for the future.
Update – October 2017
I moved in to Homes of Hope’s Wythenshawe home a year ago after becoming homeless and sleeping rough in Salford when I failed to complete a masters degree due to problems with addiction and mental health that I had not successfully addressed. It has been a busy and life changing year for me. Whilst here I have been able to complete a reduction (RAMP) and detox programme, 5 months community rehabilitation (DEAP), delivered a workshop in a local primary school (LAB project), courses in health and social care, counselling, social and employment skills (Focus & Fly), regularly attended twelve step mutual aid groups and started volunteering with an addiction treatment service. I have been able to regrow my family relationships, build a network of new friends in recovery and walk my sister down the aisle at her wedding. I can now start to get my confidence back and feel hopeful for the future. I have been able to get active in the local community and attend weekly exercise groups and Wythenshawe ParkRun every Saturday. Living in this Homes of Hope home has allowed me to do all these things.
A year ago I would break a sweat going to the local shops, since living here I have been able to run in a 10k and now enter the Manchester Half Marathon – the longest distance I will have travelled by foot!