My sister had a conversation with Liz who stated we needed some help getting things sorted out for me and my mum. First of all it was looking at things for me to do when my college course finished. They spent some time together and I got set up on a personal budget. I made use of this by going along to some activities delivered by local organisations but one of the main things I talked about was working with dogs, I was really specific I wanted to work with dogs and take them for walks. I had tried to volunteer with a local branch of a national charity but had not had a lot of success with them. So we had a look around and discovered only a mile up the road from me was a charity taking care of rescue dogs, after a telephone conversation and a visit I started volunteering there one day a week.
Life settled down for me and I was really enjoying the variety of things I had the chance to do. I was also receiving some 1:1 support to go and do different things every now and then, the odd night out, visiting friends in towns I had lived before and even a weekend in London.
A couple of years went by and it had reached the stage where my mum was ready to do her own thing and I wanted the chance to live in my own place. So back to the drawing board and exploring what could be possible. It became clear that I wanted to stay in the house I had been living in and mum wanted a change of scene.
We had a search and found some flat available in a local sheltered living scheme, again only a mile or so away from where we lived. We went for a look around and it ticked most of the boxes. Mum decided she wanted to go ahead and the flat was secured and before we knew it she had moved in…. after a lot of decorating was done by my sister.
So a new lease of life for mum and me, but still close enough to each other to keep in touch and be there for each other.
I soon made my place my own and was enjoying having my own space and still going and doing things for myself.
After a few years I decided I would like to find someone to share my home with, for the company but also to share the expense of living on your own.
We asked the Social work team if anyone was looking for a place to live, although a couple of people were identified it didn’t work out for one reason or another.
So we started a search, it just so happened that Imagineer were also supporting someone to move up to the area for work.
Bingo! It just made sense to ask him if they would like to meet me. Which he did and we got on like a house on fire…. well not literally
So we started to make the steps to make this possible, involving the right people, ensuring the funding was in place, making sure the support would work well and considering any contingency plans that would need to be put in place.
We went at the right pace so that both myself and my new roommate could be confident we were making the right decision and 6 months down the line we are celebrating sharing the house together.