I’m not sure if you heard (if you live in the area, you might have actually heard me screaming) but a couple of weeks ago I jumped out of a perfectly good plane to raise money for the Transformation Charity Project.
The Transformation Charity Project has been set up with two main objectives. Firstly, to create a study area in all 32 rooms run by the Salisbury Trust for the Homeless, and secondly to allow The Trussell Trust to develop and expand their support courses entitled “Eat Well, Spend Less.” These courses are all about helping people in crisis across Wiltshire to get back into employment, into their own accommodation and generally to be better prepared for self-supported, independent living.
My son and I briefly experienced homelessness when he was just 18 months old, but looking back we were actually extremely lucky. We were being evicted from the home we rented from a private landlord, and were not told until the night before our notice period ended, where we would be living or the type of temporary accommodation we would be put into. We were told that it could well be a hostel, in which case our furniture and most of our belongings would need to go into storage, or that we might be allocated a flat. We were unable to make any preparations before the day of our move, except hiring a van. It was possibly the most stressful, terrifying experience of my life. Eventually we were housed in a flat in Warminster, and after five months we managed to move back to Salisbury to a new build property.
Three and a half years later, here I am in a beautiful house with a stable home and business on the rise, doing what I love. I could never have imagined I would end up here, and I feel incredibly lucky.
I spent a brief time living on Bemerton Heath, where I met lots of mums at the local children’s centre. One of these was a lovely lady with a very kind heart. She had helped someone who needed a place to stay, but this person left suddenly, emptying all the food from the kitchen before they went. This kind-hearted lady was the mother of a one year old child and was left in crisis through no fault of her own, with no food and no money with which to fill her cupboards. We managed to get her to the Trussell Trust who provided her with enough food to tide them over until she received her next benefit payment.
After my own brush with homelessness, and seeing a friend in crisis through no fault of her own, I was keen to help this charity in any way I could. There are many people in this world who just need a little help to get back on their feet. There is an unnecessary stigma for those who end up requiring the services of the Trussell Trust or a homeless charity, but these people are no different from you or I; they’ve just fallen on hard times, trusted the wrong person, been a victim of circumstance.
I believe the Transformation Charity Project is an amazing cause and I was delighted to be able to help out in my own small way. Plus, the skydive was quite good fun as it happens!