Julie’s story

A combination of physical and mental health problems left Julie isolated and unsafe.

Health and mobility problems meant Julie experienced a series of falls that left her with head injuries and without the confidence to leave the house. Isolated from her local community, Julie’s physical and mental health only improved when she moved in to supported housing. This is her story…

Prior to moving in to her current home, Julie was living in a first floor flat, which she was struggling to leave without risk of injury. Unable to take the rubbish out, the cleanliness of the property was affected and this had an impact on her mental health. Her isolation was compounded when her mobility scooter — stored downstairs in the communal area due to lack of space — was repeatedly vandalised and she was the victim of antisocial behaviour.

All of these factors led to Julie repeatedly attempting suicide and she was hospitalised before being offered supported housing in 2014.

She describes what happened next:

“My life changed when I moved in to supported housing for the better and I have regular welfare checks to make sure I am managing. I feel safe living here as there is a 24-hour care line to assist with any problems I might have and I have used this on many occasions when I’ve fallen and needed an ambulance and other occasions to help me work through my panic attacks.

The Support Officers have been great – They encouraged me to join in with the social events that are available here and I have made many new friends through these. The staff also talked to me about healthy eating which I am doing well with and have lost half a stone. I have also, with their support, managed to give up smoking.”

Without supported housing, Julie doesn’t think her future would have been so bright. She says:

“If it wasn’t for me moving in to supported housing, my mental health would have deteriorated, I would have remained in a property that was unsuitable for my needs and there’s a strong possibility that I would have ended up in a hospital or mental health ward.

I love supported housing, it has changed my world. I am able to live independently but still have the support of on-site staff if I need to talk to someone.”

Help raise awareness

Thousands of people have gained their independence through supported housing. The Starts at Home campaign aims to ensure that people who need extra support will always have a home that meets their needs.

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