When I moved to Emmaus Hull in October 2017, I had a history of drug abuse and mental issues. Emmaus provided me with a secure place to live, a reason to stay clean of drugs and a reason to get moving every day. I started out volunteering in the different areas of Emmaus 5 days a week, including the shops and kitchen, in return for a good way of life. When I first came to Emmaus, I was quiet and didn’t really talk to anyone. All the people who live and work at Emmaus really made me feel welcome into the family there. I have since moved out into a rented property and now work in business to business sales. I’m enjoying every minute of the new life I am living. Thank you to all the staff and companions at Emmaus Hull & East Riding for the fantastic support and education during my time there. 🙂
I was a companion of Hull & East Riding Emmaus from May 2016 until March 2017.
I moved into Emmaus due to finding myself homeless after the break up of my marriage, I was given a list of hostels by the Wilson Centre and Emmaus was included on the list, I visited the site & after discussing my situation with the then housing manager I was invited for a taster, after the 2nd day of my taster I was offered a place as a companion which I accepted gladly.
During my time with Emmaus I was a founding member of the outreach team and also a team leader, I carried out several training courses to improve the skills I had to offer on the outreach team, I also took advantage of several companies whose staff visited the Emmaus site & offered various opportunities to better myself & my employment options.
I received continuous assistance from staff with regards to my access case for access to my daughter from the marriage.
I managed to secure employment in March 2017 so was moved unto the move on process and after a fortnight (with assistance from Kelly Lou) I was able to secure a 1 bedroom housing association flat, I was assisted in furnishing my flat with the essentials I needed by Emmaus and chose to make a financial donation in return for the items I received as part of a moving on solidarity pack so I was able to be comfortable in my new home straight away.
A year later I am still able to speak to the Emmaus support staff if I have any concerns or just for a bit of advise, I am also still welcome to the site as a visitor, I can go to Emmaus for the odd meal or to do some laundry if I am in need or struggling a bit and the staff still give me support & guidance if I need any.
I feel I am completely self sufficient again now which is testament to the assistance, advise & guidance given to me by the Emmaus staff team, I have all my confidence back & am thoroughly enjoying being back as a productive member of society.
I know I can rely on the Staff & companions at Emmaus anytime should I need any further assistance or advise or even just for a bit of conversation every now and then.
I am always willing to return and speak to visitors or new companions about my Emmaus experience and the opportunities of self improvement that are available to all companions.
I became homeless back in 2012, when I left my family home. I was causing lots of problems for my family and chose to leave to stop hurting them. I first moved into a hostel when I was eighteen and since then I’ve constantly been in a hostel or sleeping rough on the streets. I also started using legal highs to numb myself from the reality that I was living. I was a mess in need of help.
That all changed when I came to Emmaus Hull and East Riding, they took a chance on me and they have helped me get off drugs, gave me a roof over my head, they have given me training and opportunities to better myself, I have never received so much support and praise from anywhere else apart from here in Emmaus. I can now work a shop till, I have engaged with customers and improved my confidence and communication skills, I have passed courses whilst I have been here such as my Level 2 food hygiene, NVQ Level 2 Warehouse and Storage, I’m currently doing a bike mechanic course which I really enjoy doing and it has made me think of doing it as a career. Emmaus have also helped me get back talking to my family who I’ve missed so much
I’ve never felt happier since coming to Emmaus, I’ve met some great people since being here. I have received so much support from the staff and companions at Emmaus, They have helped me through so much and it makes me feel so much happier knowing I’ve got people here who care.
To be honest I’m not sure what my future may bring. What I hope is for a full time job, my own place to call my home and to hopefully move back to Beverley, which is where I’m from. I’m more confident that It could happen someday, but if it doesn’t It wouldn’t upset me because to be honest I love being here at Emmaus. What I most like about being here at Emmaus, to be honest I can’t choose one individual thing I like because there’s so much I like from being here, The staff and companions here are amazing people, the training and work is so much fun and I love being part of something like this. I will forever be grateful that a place like Emmaus exists and I will always be grateful that I was took in by the place. I’m proud of myself for what I’ve achieved since being here and just hope that it will continue.
I first came to Emmaus in September 2016 after a patch of excessive drug taking that resulted in me being in massive debt.
When i arrived i was met by people who were judgement free and who only wanted to help me. . Emmaus arranged a work placement for me with Aunt Bessies in their New Product Development Department for 6 weeks which resulted in me gaining a full time apprenticeship in their Ferguson Fawcett Arms restaurant.
Emmaus also supported my pet dog Simba living in the community and helped him find a new home.
The staff at Emmaus have helped me more than anybody ever has, to the point now where i am in full time employment training to be a chef.
My path at Emmaus has not always been smooth, there has been a few problems, but with the staff and fellow companions help and guidance i have always pulled myself back around.
I have met some of my best friends here, friends i will probably have for life now.
This place has given me the motivation, opportunity and support i needed to realise where i wanted to go in life.
The staff have all worked extremely hard to get me where i am in my job, through contacts they have.
I owe my life to Emmaus and can never thank them enough
I came to Emmaus in January 2017. I had never even heard of it and couldn’t even spell it, as the staff at Emmaus Hull and East Riding will confirm.
When I first arrived I was at the high end of the depression scale and couldn’t see any way out of it. I was at the lowest point of my life. I was like that for the first couple of weeks. Slowly, after a couple of sessions with the support workers and other staff members, Kelly Thompson, Alex Slater, Kelly Louise Meacock & Caroline Russell, I gradually started to come back out of my shell. The other companions were a large part of this process too. I wish I could name them all but I would get writer’s cramp.
Emmaus Hull and East Riding along with Emmaus UK have done a lot for me, they paid for me to switch my Irish driving licence to a UK one, they have put me through various courses and, most recently, the staff at Emmaus Hull, applied to Emmaus UK for the fees to do the E.C.D.L V6 Level 1 & 2. When I first asked to do the course I never really expected a positive result for the fees because it is by no means a cheap course. I was extremely happy when it was agreed.
I passed the course in December, which I am extremely thankful for, otherwise I know at least one of the staff would have kicked my butt. It’s ok Alex I won’t mention any names. A couple of weeks after passing the course I got a job offer and started work after the new year. I am now in the move on process and am still getting all the support I need, help with finding a flat etc.
I haved really enjoyed my time at Emmaus and cannot thank the staff and fellow companions enough for all the help and advice they have given me during my time here.
Thanks so much guys, and in the words of Arnold Schwarzenegger, I’LL BE BACK ( not permanently though 🙂
My drug problem began when I was nine years old, and for 24 years I battled with addiction. During that time I was in and out of prison and homeless. I class myself as lucky because often people in my shoes – homeless with an addiction – have their mental health overlooked.
13 years ago whilst I was in prison, I’d been seeing the medical team to help me with my addictions during which the doctor began to notice my symptoms were more than just the side effect of drugs. I’ve always suffered with my mental health and as a child I was diagnosed with ADHD. After being assessed I was eventually diagnosed with bipolar and was moved to a hospital for the remainder of my sentence.
I continued to struggle with my addiction, mental health, and being homeless until 2016. There was a homelessness shelter in Oxfordshire that I used to visit. One day they referred me to Emmaus Oxford.
I went along to the community but unfortunately there were no spare rooms, but they called me up to tell me that they had a place for me at Emmaus Gloucestershire. I was thrilled. The feeling of waking up in a warm bed to a breakfast and hot shower on the first morning will stay with me for a long time.
As soon as I joined I was surrounded by doctors, counsellors and mental health support workers. Everyone at Emmaus is treated as an equal. I can’t stress enough how grateful I am to Emmaus for the support they have provided me with.
With bipolar you are prone to suffering from manic depression. When I was homeless it’d be happening nearly every day which was scary. I wasn’t only a risk to myself, but also to others. Now I’m proud to say that it happens only about once a month.
After eight months at Emmaus Gloucestershire I moved to Emmaus Dover. I love everything here; there are different characters but it’s a really good team spirit. My support worker at Emmaus Dover has been brilliant. If I’m ever having a really bad day I can just give her a call.
My plans for the future are to carry on working at Emmaus. I want to do more solidarity projects and possibly visit Bosnia and Romania to help out at Emmaus communities there. I’m looking forward to the satisfaction of helping others.
It’s great to see things like Mental Health Awareness Week, but more needs to be done. I’m a firm believer that homelessness, mental health problems and addiction are all linked. I just hope that more support can be put in place to help homeless people with their mental health.
Emmaus is my life; it’s that simple. They’ve always been there for me. In my eyes I’ll always be indebted to Emmaus for the support that they’ve provided me. They’ve helped me deal with my bipolar and to thrive in the community.
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