Taking the Stress out of Homelessness

“I grew up in North Dublin, with four brothers and one sister. My troubles started when my marriage broke up in my 30s. I found it very hard to get anywhere to live. Every time I got somewhere, something would happen and I would have to move out. I was on long-term sickness benefit after having cancer but when I got better I got myself a job.

Things were good for a while but when I lost my job I couldn’t find any landlords who would take someone on social welfare. Eventually I found a place. I was only living there a couple of months and the landlord wanted to sell so I had to move. I had nowhere to live and so I was living in my car.

It made me feel low and dirty – a horrible experience, you wouldn’t know who would be coming around the streets. I’d never stay anywhere twice. I was nearly suicidal. I was drinking and taking stress tablets, more tablets than I should have been taking, and one night things got so bad I rang an ambulance.

I asked for help and after that I was put in touch with Sophia. I can’t get over how quick they got me a place. They were so nice, so kind. I’m a lot happier in myself. I still take stress tablets but I’ve a lovely home, I appreciate what I have and I keep it immaculate. I have come a long way in just a year and a bit. You have no idea what that place means to me – I keep her like a new pin, I’m worse than any woman.”