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Michelle - A GMHF story

Michelle’s story is sadly all too familiar.

Having been repeatedly let down by the system set up to support her, Michelle was eventually referred into the GM Housing First pilot. And the rest is history.

It’s a long way from the years she spent in a lot of very unsafe places; including temporary, emergency accommodation and sofa-surfing.

In some of those places, she suffered physical, emotional and mental abuse and was forced to move around to try and find some piece of mind.

She was turned down by the council for housing, but when she was referred into the Greater Manchester Housing First pilot, things started to change.

She said: “When I was introduced to GM Housing First I had hope for the first time in years.”

Her worker, Sarah, was able to listen to Michelle and put her in control of her recovery journey.

Between them, they were able to get Michelle into a safe and secure home of her own and were able to help her engage with her local church, eventually becoming a volunteer and part of the food bank team.

She was also able to strengthen her roots in the area and began to help care for the horses at a local farm.

Thanks to the GM Housing First pilot, Michelle is reducing the harm her addiction and anxiety has done to her over the years and is making fantastic progress.

She said: “I have finally been able to deal with my anxiety and addiction issues because all I needed to start with was a safe base.

“Since being in my own property, I have been able to stop using the drugs I took to cope with the trauma of my situation.

“I’ve been able to stick to my prescriptions, look after my health and I have been able to take up hobbies such as art, music and roller-skating.

“I have been working on prayer and meditation and I aim to slowly start to heal from all the bad times and unfortunate incidents of the past.

“I now have a safe space to focus on myself and reach the goals in life I always thought were unobtainable to me.

“And it’s down to the people on the Housing First pilot who have helped me where so many others have failed.”


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