‘I now have a place of my own’ – read Harold’s story

As is often the case, several factors combined to result in Harold becoming homeless. First, his landlord wanted to refurbish his flat and he was unable to find somewhere else without taking time off work, so he lost his job.

At the same time, Harold was also experiencing some significant health problems, for which he needed an operation. ‘At that time there were too many things set against me to find somewhere else to live and I had nowhere left to go.’ Harold was one of our first customers to move into our newly built Alexandra House service in Croydon.

He was nervous at first but taking part in customer involvement activities encouraged him:

‘I didn’t really socialise when I moved in, I was trying to keep myself to myself. But it came to a point where one of the staff said I’d be a very good Customer Representative. And then I started socialising, getting to meet everybody, and asking how I could help them and how Evolve could help them’

When it came to moving on, our Resettlement staff supported Harold to view flats, check their suitability and to get ready for living independently. ‘I live in Thornton Heath now and I’m happy. I’ve got lots of friends here and I feel better now because I’ve got my own space. It’s wonderful that my granddaughter can come to visit me and we have somewhere to spend quality time together.’

Harold is a plasterer by trade, something he is very proud of; since moving on he also feels like he’s ready to get back into work. ‘I feel like I’m somebody again, that’s the main thing.’

If you would like to learn more about Alexandra House click here.

To read more stories about our customers in our annual report click here.

Keep in touch

Sign up for our newsletter to stay updated on our work, as well as donating, fundraising, volunteering and campaigning opportunities: