MARIE’S STORY

Marie had moved from London to Bristol due to a relationship breakdown with mum. She had family members living in Bristol. Marie felt she wanted a new start and wanted to focus on employment, education and housing.

She had experienced a traumatic relationship breakdown with her partner in London, with reports of harassment. She presented with mental health issues (anxiety and depression), and mobility issues due to a bad back.

 

What did we do?

1625ip built a working relationship with Marie. She was new to the area, so we showed her around local amenities. We supported her sort out the right benefits, as she was working part-time, and helped her set up her utility bills and put payment plans in place. We discussed the foodbank and supported her to contact a kind local welfare grant, who provided a grant for a double bed, wardrobe and sofa.

There were issues with harassment from her ex-partner and reports of him visiting Marie’s flat and causing arguments. This adding to Marie’s anxiety and depression. We discussed reporting this to the police and the available support via a domestic violence support group. Unfortunately, Marie did not want to do this or engage with any service.

Marie got herself in to rent arrears. This was difficult because she didn’t earn a lot, so most of Marie’s wages were spent on rent. However, we supported her to get food bank vouchers, and this eased the pressure a bit.

We supported Marie register for Home Choice and offered support in bidding on properties, but without any success. Her tenancy was coming to an end, and 1625ip discussed private rented accommodation. She went to several viewings, but the properties were not suitable. Finally, she was awarded a new build property in South Gloucestershire via Home Choice.

We supported her in understanding the tenancy agreement, which enabled her to be more independent in her new home. Eventutally, we were about to help her contact the police about the harassment from her ex-partner. We gave her the confidence to speak out and hold her partner responsible for his actions.

 

What strengths did she demonstrate?

Overall, Marie showed great strength. Marie was keen to work and wanted to keep herself busy. She had the option of quitting her job and be dependent on benefits but chose not to. She lost her job due to the pub closure, but she had found employment in a care home within a week. She did all her relevant training with her new employer and started working night shifts. Her timekeeping was good, and she enjoyed working with the elderly in a care home. She paid her rent arrears due to an increase in wages. This demonstrated that she understood her responsibilities as a tenant and was living well independently.