I moved to a YMCA Cornwall flat when I was 18 years old because my previous tenancy had reached its expiry date and it had been made clear to me that this was my only option. I was a very vulnerable individual, and my mental state during that time was quite bad to say the least.
The simple gift of a fairly-sized flat and a few friendly staff members to talk to now and again made life bearable, where it could have been a great deal worse. And because I was given the space to exist and be left to my own devices, I was able to work through my personal issues, both on my own and with a YMCA counsellor. Since those dark days in July 2016, I have made progress, and continue to make progress. Some of it has been through my own tenacity and effort, some of it luck and the help I received from family and friends, and a good fair bit of it has been down to the YMCA and the support they have given me. I am now studying an Access to Higher Education course at Loughborough college.
I am sincerely grateful for all the YMCA has done for me. May it continue to provide vulnerable people with housing and support.