Phil’s story

“This place has given me a purpose, a reason to get up in the morning.”

After his divorce, Phil Hill turned drugs for comfort. His life was spiralling out of control until he was referred to a supported housing scheme in Hull.

“I went off the rails after I got divorced and ended up on drugs. I started shoplifting to feed my habit.”

As with all Emmaus schemes, residents at The Orchard, known as companions, are required to work a minimum of 40 hours a week in return for a roof over their head, food and a daily allowance. The community is supported by a social enterprise including a cafe and retail space which sells upcycled household goods.

Phil says: “I’ve learnt a lot since I’ve been here, not only about (qualifications and work) but also how to treat people. Without places like this, there would be a lot more crime on the streets. It’s a lifeline for desperate people. For the first time in a long time, I look forward to waking up in the morning.”

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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