“Everybody but Porchlight turned their back on me”

10 October 2017

Darryl

We're asking MPs to fight for the future of homeless hostels.

We want them to oppose government plans to change housing benefits (read more). This could lead to the closure of homeless hostels and other types of supported housing.

We've been sharing stories like Darryl's (below) which prove just how vital supported housing is for vulnerable people.

Darryl had been homeless for 6 months and was feeling suicidal. He says Porchlight saved his life.

He had been suffering from PTSD as a result of his former job as part of the road traffic crash response unit. When his father passed away, things spiralled out of control.

“My life completely turned upside down,” he recalls.

With nowhere to go and nobody to turn to, Darryl ended up homeless, surviving hand-to-mouth and being forced to sleep both on the streets and in his car. This ordeal left him feeling suicidal.

“It was absolutely horrible. It’s cold, you don’t know where your next meal is coming from or what you’re going to do. There’s nobody else around and you’re on your own.”

Our street team supported Darryl at a time when no-one else would. “Everybody but Porchlight had turned their backs on me,” he says.

“But Sonya from the Porchlight street team was constantly texting me to help me stay positive. She never once judged me. Without what Sonya did for me, I wouldn’t be here now.”

We found Darryl a place of his own at one of our hostels. “It felt like winning the lottery… it was the greatest feeling I’ve ever had. I finally had somewhere safe with my own front door.”

Darryl has been living with us for several months. Having somewhere safe and stable of his own is allowing him to rebuild his life, and we’re helping him to manage his mental health.

“I’m so thankful to Porchlight - If it weren’t for them, I’d be six feet under.”