Lucy

Lucy and her three children Sophie, Lewis and Tom (aged 12, 13 and 14) were at serious risk of becoming homeless.

Lucy and her three children Sophie, Lewis and Tom (aged 12, 13 and 14) were at serious risk of becoming homeless. Concentrating on being a full time mum when the children were young, she had not been in employment for years and despite seeking work, without experience and confidence, she was failing. Eventually things started to get on top of her, she was in housing arrears and not able to manage her limited income.

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The stress escalated in to a deep depression and she was not coping well at home with her children. Their home environment became very chaotic with little routine in place. She struggled to control the children’s behaviour, maintain household chores or even cook meals so they were surviving on a poor diet of biscuits and crisps.

Through depression Lucy was unmotivated to do anything. Her room was so unkempt after time she struggled to sleep in her bedroom. Instead of tidying it, she slept on the sofa for six months allowing the children to stay up late with her watching TV as company. This resulted in them struggling to wake up every morning and their attendance at school plummeted.

Their poor home life led the children to lack direction and ambition. They began spending time hanging around with the wrong crowds and started to believe the only way to get nice things was by drug dealing or stealing. They didn’t have a positive role model. 

As their lives hit crisis point, Lucy and her family were referred to the Action for Children service, Think Tank Families by the children’s school and this support was vital for the family to turn around their lives.

Lucy’s health was assessed and she was offered the right medical and financial support to get through the other side. The children began attending school again and extra support was put in place to support their additional needs.

As Lucy’s health improved, she found the motivation she had lost to be proud of her home again - simply sorting her bedroom and sleeping back upstairs, had a large positive effect on the household. Getting enough sleep and reinstating a routine gave the whole house organisation. The children now attend school as they should, eat proper meals and when they return from school, Lucy helps with homework ahead of a strict bedtime curfew.

With the practical and emotional support from Action for Children for both Lucy and the children, the family are no longer at risk of losing their home. Lucy now attends a computer course and is looking for work, determined to give the children a positive role model. The children are ambitious about the future and Tom would like to become a police officer.

With the practical and emotional support from Action for Children for both Lucy and the children, the family are no longer at risk of losing their home.
Action for Children service worker

Thanks to Action for Children’s focus on early intervention and mediation, this family has managed to slowly turn their life around and where there was once a real risk of homelessness, family separation or a dark path ahead for the children, Think Tank has given them a bright future.