How I became homeless

In March it got too much to stay at home due to family breakdown with lots of arguments and I had to leave. I found myself homeless and living in a tent for two weeks. I was studying at Bridgwater College and the Student Support, who took me to Routes where Housing Advice Team YMCA are. I was able to access Nightstop, I met with Staff to do the paperwork that day and was offered a placement with a Host. I stayed in Nightstop for five nights.

My Hosts were amazing, so helpful. I was able to have a shower and eat food, which I didn’t have means to do before. When I first went to the Hosts I had planned to go out and meet friends however we started talking and ended up talking all night. Having someone to listen made a big difference. Nightstop allowed me to have more confidence as didn’t know where to go, it opened up more options and opportunities.

Once you’ve heard there is a placement you can stop worrying for that day and can concentrate on other things.

After five nights the YMCA found me emergency accommodation, where I stayed for three weeks. In the mean time I had an interview for YMCA Supported Housing and after a successful interview I was offered a 1 bed flat at Clifford Searle House.

The YMCA offered me the chance to do the Tenant Accreditation Scheme course [a pre-tenancy training course]. At first I was not sure because I felt I knew everything but I went on the course and I learnt so much. This is definitely a worthwhile course and I would recommend it.

My experience of the YMCA has been great; everything is so clean and looked after. The Staff are so helpful and supportive which has helped.

I am now a Volunteer for the YMCA as a Day Camp Leader and I help teach Kayaking, because the YMCA have done so much for me I wanted to give something back.

Relationships at home are now amazing and we all get on so much better. Nightstop put the ‘home’ back into homeless.