Guest Story

I’m 19 years old, I turned 19 while I was at the shelter. I’d been living with my ex-partner for two and half years. They came home one day and without any notice told me to pack my bags and leave. It was such a shock, I didn’t have time to process it. I chucked some clothes in a bag and left within half an hour.

I’m a student and work part time for a hotel chain, so I booked myself into one of their hotels. Even with staff discount, I spent all my money, £300, on 4 nights. I was desperate and broke. Someone at college suggested I went to New Horizon Youth Centre who made a referral to the shelter – at the time I didn’t realise how lucky I was that they had a bed.

It took me a couple of weeks to comprehend what had happened to me. I was homeless, my relationship, even though it had been abusive was over and I wasn’t at all sure what the future held.

I’m luckier than some. I’m studying Biomedical Science at college, I’ve got a part time job and I’ve got a dream – I want to become a nurse.

I feel fortunate to be in the shelter, I can wash my clothes, have a shower, I get nice meals, but more than anything…I don’t have to panic about where I’m going to spend the night.

I used to think people experiencing homelessness were different in some way. I understand now it’s you and me – it can happen to any of us.