Michael, who has learning difficulties, has been homeless for much of his adult life. As a vulnerable person he has repeatedly been let down by the systems and organisations charged with supporting those who are unable to support themselves.
After losing touch with the surviving members of his family Michael, now 63, found himself at rock bottom – sleeping rough in the Boston and Skegness areas.
With Framework’s support he is now living independently and supporting himself for the first time in his life. This achievement was made possible with extensive support from resettlement worker Dena, who, after making sure he was ready to stand on his own two feet, found him the right accommodation and ensured everything was in place to make the move a lasting success.
He was also given a small grant to buy vital items for his new home.
Michael explained: “Before Framework I was sleeping rough. I was living in the park, in a tunnel, in a tent, and on the beach. It was cold and it was very scary at night. When you get up in the morning there is no chance of a cup of tea for you and you don’t know where your next meal is going to come from. It was horrible but Framework helped me. They put me into a bed and breakfast before I could have an assessment. Two days later they moved me into the Pathways Centre, in Lincoln.”
Michael left school at the age of 16 and worked for many years as a farm labourer. His troubles began when his parents, his boss, and eventually his brother died. With few people left to turn to for help he spiralled into deep personal decline. Lonely and isolated his drinking got out of control and his living arrangements were chaotic. The few tenancies he had collapsed – mainly because so little was done to address his problems. At other times he lived in an old camper van.
He added: “I used to live from day to day because I had nobody to turn to for help. I had no parents to ask for help and no family either. They had all moved on and left me. I felt like a black sheep. It was Framework who helped me by getting me into the Pathways Centre. Dena did so much for me because she took the time to listen to me and give me the support I need.
“I am now living in a warden controlled flat. I really like it there because I can be independent. I used some money from my move on pack to buy a microwave, a toaster and some new bedding. The microwave was really important to me because it enabled me to cook my own meals and to look after myself.
“I feel so much better now because of the support I have had. I don’t think about what happened yesterday now... At my age I don’t know when I am going to go! I just enjoy my life now.
"If you had told me two years ago that I would have been in this situation and living on my own then I would have wanted to believe you…but, without Framework, I am not sure how it would have happened."