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From the brink of homelessness to debt-free with a rosy future

Her financial situation got worse at the start of last year when she was lost her job working in a coffee shop. Fast forward to today, she is back in full- time employment in a job that she loves and is also debt-free, having paid off her arrears.

Madeline, 32, who also suffered from alcohol and drug addiction, received support from a number of Circle Housing’s neighbourhood team, which she believes has helped her to turn her life around.

She said: “I was in all sorts of trouble and very nearly lost my home. It was my Dad who encouraged me to get in touch with Circle Housing. And although I initially ignored his advice, I am grateful for all of they have done. From helping me to manage my money better to getting me back into full-time work, they have played a big part in my journey.”

Madeline said: “My old job was poorly paid and I wasn’t even on a proper contract. Once I lost my job, Circle Housing were determined that I got back in to secure full-time work.”

Madeline met regularly with Circle Housing’s local employment advisor who was able to help her to find a secure a job as a Nanny. she said: “I had big gaps in my CV, so Circle Housing helped me to bring it back up to date, including making sure I had proper references. They also helped me to access a basic computer course, which helped me to regain my confidence.”

Her advice to others in need of support is to capitalise on the help that is available, whether it’s through the local housing association or other support providers. She said: “The right help is definitely out there, but you have to act on the advice that is being given to you and take it seriously in order to turn things around.”

While she is enjoying her current job, she has ambitious plans for her own future and her long term goal is to rekindle her passion for ice staking. “I used to be a good skater when I was younger and my dream would be to become a skating coach in the future.”

Circle Housing is also committed to initiatives in partnership with other providers, to improve the employment, training and wage progression of social housing tenants and others in the wider community:

‘Love London Working’ is a new programme to tackle unemployment in the capital. A group of 16 London housing associations, of which Circle Housing is part of and led by Affinity Sutton, will support 21,000 unemployed Londoners helping over 6,500 into work, many for the first time. It has a particular focus on those experiencing major barriers to work, such as a disability.

The proposed merger between Circle Housing and Affinity Sutton will become one of the country’s biggest providers of employment services and help 4,000 people a year into work. It will generate a social return on investment of over £1 billion, which will, amongst other things, help more than 200 young people into apprenticeships and support 15,000 young people get a better start in life