I first came to Stay about 10 years ago following a period in care and then in the YMCA. I was unable to maintain my accommodation at the YMCA as I found I had no life skills to enable me to hold down my tenancy. I started with Stay in Wesley House, I was very young and drinking a lot at the time. I moved into a resettlement flat in Brookside and I found once again I just did not have the relevant lifeskills to hold down this tenancy.
I then went through a long unsettled period of homelessness. I was drinking excessively and became alcohol dependant. I drifted from one unsuitable place to stay to the next and there seemed like there was little hope for my future.
At this time my alcoholism hit a real crisis point and I had to spend time in hospital. When I was released from hospital I was worried that I was an alcoholic that was struggling to function. I still did not have the lifeskills to cope with a tenancy so I signed up for Supported Accommodation at Blews Hill Court in Dawley. This accommodation allowed me to sign a tenancy knowing that I would get the support needed to maintain and manage my tenancy.I went through the support package at Blews Hill Court and managed to successfully maintain my tenancy and be ready to sign a tenancy with a social landlord.
I now have a beautiful 1 bedroom house. I have a cat and a dog that are my family and I get a lot of comfort and enjoyment from having something to love and care for. I accessed support and treatment that enabled me to stop drinking and today (17/09/2014) I completed my first year of being a none drinker.
I have not long come back from my first ever holiday abroad to Egypt and whilst I was there I managed to completed and pass level one of a scuba diving qualification. This was a big achievement for me and I am going to complete the second level now in the UK.
I am also doing voluntary work for the Kip project as I feel my life experience has taught me how to help others and the difference support and guidance can make to people.
Stay has been amazing and I would not be where I am today without their support. They taught me lifeskills, how to keep my house and myself clean and how to budgeting and pay bills. They also provided me with the emotional support I needed to become more socially independent. They supported me to rebuild relationships with my family and to make new friends. They signposted me to relevant agencies that were able to help me stop drinking and get therapy for my mental health problems. They also helped me get involved with a church group that has been a real turning point for me.
I am extremely ambitious for my future. I want to achieve the following things:
- To continue with my voluntary work at Kip
- To enrol on an Access to Nursing Course with a view to then completing a Nursing Degree
- To continue my sobriety
- To complete my therapy
- To continue to maintain my accommodation successfully
I am continuing to get Floating Support from Thrive and they support me to keep things running smoothly with my tenancy.