“I am 66 and I never thought I would be in a situation like this. I was living a comfortable life for the last 16 years and my companion and my best friend suddenly died!
I was living in his home and my world fell apart. I was at a very low ebb, a real wreck.
Just days after him dying, I was told that I had 6 months to find somewhere else. I had no idea what to do.
I went to the council offices, and they said that I could end up in a shared house, a hostel, and it could be anywhere. I completely fell apart!
It was then that a friend told me about REACH and I thought to myself, ‘what have I got to lose!’
So I went into REACH that afternoon, it was very busy. It was very daunting and I felt very nervous. I received a very warm welcome and I was offered tea and biscuits. I waited ages to see someone and I finally saw a nice lady who was very helpful, compassionate and honest. I was very tearful, but along with her colleague, they began to point me in the right direction.
I was looking at private renting, I went to every estate agent in Haverhill, but no one would touch me as I would be on housing benefit. I can remember the people at Reach saying, ‘if we can't help you find a council home, we will personally help you get somewhere private’ and this gave me faith to be patient.
They got me registered on Homelink. This all took some time and I was still grieving. Over the next few weeks, and with the support from REACH, like having help from a young lady who set me up with Homelink on my Kindle, I regularly bid for houses and after 4 months, I found somewhere to live!
It is sheltered accommodation with Havebury in Bury St Edmunds. I am a little excited if not a little bit scared as I have never lived on my own before. I have not allowed myself to really grieve yet, but I guess that will come!
This whole episode in my life has taught me not to take anything for granted as you never know what's round the corner. Without the support from REACH I don't know where I would be today, I was very upset, but I felt that there was someone there for me, on my side if you get what I mean. I am just so thankful, really thankful, there are no words to say how grateful I am. I thought it was never going to end, but it's all happened so quickly. I keep shouting Wahoo!”