I currently work as a Business Development Manager in the IT industry, and became a Wandle resident 17 years ago after a particularly difficult time in my life. With nowhere to go my daughter and I found ourselves homeless and were living in my car. It was often cold and uncomfortable.
Since then I’ve read numerous reports that everyday there are almost 150 families that become homeless in Britain, and it was hard to know that we were part of that statistic in a first world country. At the time, I didn’t know that social housing existed but I applied to be added to the housing list with my local authority and became a Wandle resident in 2010.
Having a home means a huge amount to me and my daughter – it has given us the much-needed stability, and a platform, to completely re-build our lives. It was such a relief. Now we had a place to call home, I was able to start consulting and save the money that I needed to buy my Wandle home. If it wasn’t for Wandle, I don’t know where we’d both be.
From my experience, I believe that everyone deserves a roof over their head to thrive, have privacy and to a place to call home.
But for me the most positive aspect to Wandle is that it is not simply a landlord, offering homes to people across South London - but an organisation that reaches out to tenants, offering help to those who need it, giving opportunities and organising a host of free projects and business incentive schemes to those willing to be involved.
It seems such a rarity considering that the housing crisis is in full swing, but it's great to see that Wandle are doing their bit to help address the problem.
Wandle build and provide a number of different properties, which includes social, rented and shared ownership. I think that building more homes is key to ensuring that young people, like my daughter, can have a home to call their own.
Having been a resident for a while, I have recently found a way to say thank you to Wandle by getting involved in everything to help them continue to improve their services for their other tenants and homeowners.