We’ve been supporting a young woman since 2018 and to keep her story anonymous we’re going to name her Sarah.

We began supporting Sarah back in 2018. When we first met her, she was trying to get off heroin; she was housed in a property but unfortunately she slipped and started using again. She believed this would mean she would lose her property so she left the shared house she lived in and moved out onto the street into a tent.

Stephen, our Head of Support, was out on Street Outreach in the city centre and found her by the tent in a really bad way. She felt desperate and remorseful, feeling that she had let herself down.

He brought her back to our office and made a few calls; he discovered that thankfully she still had the flat so it was vital for us to help her with her drug recovery.

Aimee, our Resettlement Worker, managed to get an appointment with the drug assessment unit. Sarah was suffering from withdrawal because she hadn’t used for 3 days so Aimee took her and sat with her through the assessment. Sarah was prescribed a script to help with her withdrawals and every day without fail she would go to the pharmacy; she was really committed to her recovery.

During this time our Resettlement Worker was looking at other ways to support Sarah.  Aimee arranged for her to see a consellor and accompanied her to the rape crisis centre to help her with the mental and emotional trauma of childhood abuse. Aimee also helped Sarah to get the most of food shopping, to learn to budget and keep on top of her bills. Sarah also started volunteering with us at Barnabus; she was an encouragement to people who were sleeping rough and she was gaining hope and confidence.

It was amazing to see her come into her own as her ability and faith in herself increased. Aimee would visit her at home to find she had cooked a meal for her house mates, all her washing would be hung out and drying and the house looked great. She was living her life again just how she wanted to.

When Sarah eventually got her detox program date she was ready for it, she knew she had become reliant on the Subutex and she was determined to come off that too. After powering though two tough weeks of cold turkey on detox, she went into 8 weeks of rehab to deal with the emotional side as to why she became an addict. Rehab can be a really challenging time for people; they can’t have any visitors or outside contact and they enter into deep group sessions discussing very personal reasons for becoming addicts and how they can overcome those issues.

Sarah is now out of rehab; she is completely drug free and now attends some online groups. When Aimee first saw her after rehab she honestly couldn’t believe it, she had put some weight on, her skin was glowing and she looked amazing and was so focused and positive about the future.

Sarah continued to do well in her shared house and helped support those she lived with through Covid. Her landlord told us, “She was an inspiration and a credit to the work we’ve done together”.

We’re delighted to say that Aimee has now found Sarah a private tenancy in our resettlement scheme so that she can have a home of her own. We helped source and buy some items she would need to make this house into a real home; everything from beds to curtains and kitchenware. We believe this will be one of the last ways in which we support Sarah; we really give thanks because it is amazing to see how far she has come in rebuilding her life and overcoming her addiction. We’re so proud of her and we’re blessed and privileged to have been able to offer support and be on this journey of hope together.

High Street Vouchers are an amazing way for you to support people like Sarah moving into tenancies on our resettlement scheme. It means we can go to places like Wilko, Argos and B&Q to buy paint, curtains, microwaves, toasters: all the things we take for granted to make our house a home.

You can buy these online and arrange for these to be sent to Barnabus, 61 Bloom St, Manchester M1 3LY https://www.highstreetvouchers.com/gifts/love2shop-gift-vouchers we’re also blessed to receive supermarket and B&Q vouchers.

Alternatively please donate a gift online via our website https://www.barnabus-manchester.org.uk/

We unfortunately don’t have warehouse space to keep second hand furniture but we do make appeals from time to time when furniture is needed on our social media. Please share our posts to help us find the items our friends need to make a home.

If you are a landlord or a company who wants to support us, please email [email protected]. We would love to hear from you.