LIVE - The magazine for Optivo residents Winter 2017 - Page 3

“I’d like to thank all those staff members and residents who have shown me incredible kindness during what has been a really difficult time.” Fire devastates properties and lives too. When a blaze ripped through Alex’s house, he was left homeless and without a job. “Amazingly, they found me a place through Optivo at Wendover Court where I was made to feel at home by the staff and the residents. One resident was especially supportive – going over and above to give me some essential items that had been destroyed in the house fire. I had lost so much. My scheme manager, Paula Lathbridge, also helped me to find some basic furniture, to settle in, and introduced me to my neighbours. But we were pleased to be able to get him back on the right track by offering him accommodation at Wendover Court, Bromley, London. He’s now been able to start working again as a language teacher and he’s looking forward to spending Christmas in his new home. He said: “Before moving to Wendover Court I was living in private rented accommodation in Lewisham. I had a comfortable life in London with a good job. But then a fire destroyed everything and one month later I was homeless and unable to continue my work. “I’ve never lived in a housing association property before but I’m really impressed with the sense of community, and my neighbours are so friendly. If I have a problem, there is someone on hand to help me. I’ve now been able to start working again. Finally I feel as if my life is getting back on track. “It was devastating and had a really negative impact on my wellbeing. I faced a really challenging time overcoming anxiety and the uncertainty of my situation. “I’d like to thank all those staff members and residents who have shown me incredible kindness during what has been a really difficult time. “I had just enough funds to stay in a hostel but I struggled to get the support I needed. I didn’t know where to go so I started with my local council for advice and help. “I’m now looking forward to spending Christmas here. I don’t have any family in the UK so I will be spending it at Wendover among new friends.” 3