Customer news Wellbeing

We’re celebrating Starts at Home Day!

Today is Starts at Home Day, a campaign organised by the National Housing Federation to shine a spotlight on the vital difference that supported housing makes to thousands of people on a daily basis.

We provide accommodation and the housing management for a number of supported housing schemes across Hampshire. And we work in partnership with the support providers within our schemes to make sure our customers have the support and services needed to have bright futures.


Below, we share Gary’s story. Gary lived at the Portsmouth Foyer, a scheme managed by us, with the support being provided by Two Saints. You can read about how supported housing helped him to turn his life around.


You can follow the Start at Home campaign on Twitter – search #startsathome


Gary’s story…

“I was 17 when my Mum kicked me out of home in Swansea. Initially I was given a place in a hostel for young people but I started smoking a lot of cannabis and got into debt with drug dealers. I had no confidence, low self-esteem and suffered with anxiety and depression. I felt like no one believed in me. My behaviour was getting me into dangerous situations, so I was evicted from that hostel.


I ended up moving back to my hometown of Portsmouth and living on the streets. It was really unsafe. I remember dark and cold nights where drunk people would kick and abuse the homeless and people would go through your pockets and steal stuff when you were sleeping. To make money I started begging in the streets and shoplifting.


After 2 years of sleeping rough I went to housing advice who offered me a room at The Portsmouth Foyer. Since moving in, I haven’t looked back. Staff have helped me sort out my finances and focus on my health so I feel back in control of my life. My keyworker is great. We meet every 2 weeks and I really trust her. She’s helped me address my drug use and sort out benefit payments to stop me shoplifting and she makes sure I go to all of my appointments.


My life has totally transformed. I’m now working with The Prince’s Trust and have applied for a university access course in September so I can follow my dream of a career in the Youth Offending Team – I want to use my experiences of living on the streets to help others.“

My life has totally transformed. I’m now working with The Prince’s Trust and have applied for a university access course

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