Mark slept rough in a secluded roadside clearing near Lincoln for nearly nine years. He was helped by members of the Street Outreach Team to complete a remarkable transformation and move to a flat just a few miles away.
The most significant factor in his story was Mark’s repeated use of Framework’s 0800 hotline* to engage with and seek reassurances from staff. It was only after numerous calls over a period of months that he finally accepted the help and support that was on offer.
He explained: “My first reaction when I met the Street Outreach Team was ‘go away and leave me alone. I’ve survived here for nine years and I don’t need your help. They left me alone for three days and then came back and left me with the 0800 number. My first call to it was actually to apologise for my actions, but it really has been a lifeline to me. It was there for me when I needed it and I knew I could contact somebody who would help me.
“With me being on the streets for so long it took me nearly a year to trust them, because you find that some people on the streets don’t trust anybody but themselves. It’s taken me a long time to get used to having four walls around me again but things are getting better.”
Andy, from the Street Outreach Team, explained: “We first learned about Mark from a member of the public who called the line. Without that call we would never have found this site because there is only so much ground we can cover. Many people have tried and failed to help Mark over the years so we are very proud of this piece of work.”
*If you know of somebody sleeping rough, Framework’s Street Outreach Team can be contacted on 0800 066 5356