David was 17 years old when he first accessed The Rock Trust housing support service in West Lothian.
He had been told to leave his mother’s house after continual arguments with his mother and his siblings and he had suffered homophobic abuse by his neighbours. David was homeless, staying in an emergency hostel and very unhappy, stressed and anxious.
When David became homeless he was in college studying for a National Certificate in retail as well as holding down a job with long hours and he was finding it hard to cope.
David’s Rock Trust support worker quickly found him stable accommodation in one of The Rock Trust’s supported flats. David was working hard and receiving a small income from both college and employment. Because of this, David was not entitled to full housing benefits and his rent in his flat was between £80 – £100 per week. Together with his other living costs David was finding this very challenging and struggled to make ends meet.
As part of his support, David looked at managing his income and expenditure during budgeting sessions, with focus on where savings could be made e.g. buying his groceries in discount shops and reducing his energy bills by using less heating and electricity. His support worker also helped David access additional financial support through his college’s hardship/discretionary fund who offered to pay for David’s weekly bus pass as well as an amount towards his rent contribution.
David was able to develop other essential life skills during his time in The Rock Trust flat. He learned how to make quick, easy and economical carbonara, as well as learning kitchen safety, food hygiene and eating on a shoestring.
Once David felt confident living in the community with minimal support, he began the resettlement process.His support worker helped David to apply for a specific area in West Lothian for housing. It was important for David to live close to his work and family networks in order to maintain his positive mental well being and reduce his risk of becoming homeless again. With the help of his support worker, David was offered a permanent council tenancy close to his work and family and he was supported with moving into his new flat with additional help from his mother.
During his time being supported by The Rock Trust, David completed his college course and was working on a business proposal for his own delivery business. David had a permanent job with a leading supermarket as a supervisor and again this threw up a few challenges for him as the job included travelling to other branches around Scotland.
His relationship with his mother and family significantly improved as he was happier, less anxious and able to evidence his maturity to handle stress and life’s curve balls.
The Rock Trust helped David to overcome homelessness, stabilise his life, gain and sustain his own tenancy as well as maintain his employment. Today, David is 19 and he has recently secured his dream job in the airline industry and is very excited and feeling positive about the future – he is about to start on the first steps of career path of his choice.