Aneira is a senior shift leader at StreetLink. Here she explains what happens when an alert comes in and shares her best and most difficult moments helping to support people sleeping rough.
StreetLink community spotlight - Nathan
Nathan was made homeless due to a relationship breakdown with his partner.
His family were engaged in court proceedings, as they suspected his ex-partner had caused harm to their daughter. With a decision yet to be made, the little girl had been taken out of their care and was staying with Nathan’s parents.
This meant Nathan was not able to live with his parents, so he was sleeping in his car near their home in Gloucestershire. He had been living this way for a while.
Nathan approached the council for advice, and an alert was sent to StreetLink. This was followed up by P3, the social inclusion charity, who were able to find Nathan the next day thanks to the detailed location and telephone number provided in the alert.
The team at P3 assessed Nathan’s needs and developed a plan of support together, agreeing the next step was to complete a homeless application with the council.
However, Nathan’s circumstances were causing him anxiety; in particular he was concerned about a job interview he had lined up for the following week, as he didn’t know how he would manage any kind of employment if he still had nowhere suitable to stay.
P3 began to assist Nathan with this, and the emergency situation of the COVID-19 lockdown meant that he was able to be placed in temporary hotel accommodation, offering him a base and the stability he needed while continuing to look for a more suitable long-term home.
Nathan’s StreetLink referral meant P3 were able to confirm that he was sleeping rough, enabling the council to mark his case as a higher priority and to house him faster.
P3 were also able to provide Nathan with information on deposit schemes, where to get furniture and white goods and signposting for other agencies that would be able to offer ongoing assistance when he was settled in longer-term housing.
The outcome was that – no longer struggling with anxieties of not having somewhere to sleep, eat, wash and get clean clothes – Nathan went to his interview with dignity and confidence and was offered the job!
This was beneficial for his mental health and his financial stability; Nathan is now able to earn the money he needs to find a longer-term home for himself, and potentially for his daughter, if he wins full custody.
*name changed to protect anonymity
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Louise is the communications manager at Homeless Link.
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