Dreena’s story

The value of having people around me was clear when I had a stroke.

Supported housing gives Dreena the security she needs to live independently. This is her story.

“My marriage broke down three years before retirement. I decided to have a year out once I had retired, travelling and working out what to do next. I had always been around the Oxfordshire, so that was the obvious place to return to when I had to get back into some kind of routine.

I was amazed and delighted that I was eligible for social housing with all the security that has brought. The value of having people around me was clear when I had a stroke within a year of moving in.

Private renting would have been possible for me – just – but without the security of tenure I enjoy here at St Mary’s. An affordable rent also means I can save to travel to spend time with family who live across the UK and the other side of the world.

I arrived at St Mary’s knowing no one – even the village was new to me – so I had a built-in community straight away. Being a Soha tenant has meant I have a secure foundation to immerse myself in making new friendships but also to get involved with Soha (I am a Tenant Scrutiny Group member amongst other things). In short, I have a sanctuary here, a place where I can close my own front door but never have to be entirely alone”.