Ray's Story

We know what life was like beforehand, but recap for us before you started working with REACH.

"It was seven years ago. I was involved with social services; they had given us a food voucher to go down to Next Door Café to collect a food box. That was when I first met Ann from REACH

I then got in contact with Henry about debt through Christians Against Poverty (CAP). They set up a money management scheme for me and helped us have our first ever family holiday.

Shortly after I came back from holiday, Henry asked if I could help him with collecting and delivering furniture. We did this in the small van for quite a few months until we bought a bigger van, the Vauxhall Movano, to facilitate with moving furniture.

Three years later, the Church and Reach offered to help me with learning to drive, so they financed my lessons and the test. I passed my driving test four years ago and from there I started to go out in the van, collecting and delivering furniture. That's how the Furniture Bank developed. I did this job until recently, when I found a job in Asda doing deliveries."

And how are things now?

"I now work with Asda doing roughly 27.5 hours a week. I'm enjoying my new job, hopefully I'll be out driving in the next week or two. I would not say that my life has changed drastically, but it definitely has changed. I'm adapting to new environments and there is definitely more hope in the future.

It doesn't put away what I’ve done for REACH in the past. I'm sad to have left but I'm also happy that I’ve gone because I’m moving on to the next stage of my life.

To sum it all up, when I first started my head was in the ground, my pride was low and I wasn't feeling like a proper father to my children; I wasn’t providing properly but things have changed I now feel like a father, my head is not in ground. I can see the beauty around me now and home life is also better.  It will continue to improve."
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