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Pritesh worked in a bank for many years. He started as a cashier, then worked his way up to accounts manager and then manager of the branch.

“All the customers saw me progress. I didn’t just sit in the office – I liked to sit out on reception and talk to people. I was a strong man at that time.”

Then Pritesh went through a divorce, battled with an alcohol addiction and depression and finally became homeless after his relationship with his family completely broke down. Whilst homeless he slept rough in public parks and in church porches. It was a dangerous existence and Pritesh was the victim of violent attacks several times resulting in hospitalisation. Eventually Pritesh was found sleeping on the streets by a police officer who helped him to come to NSNO. He was in a bad way when he arrived:

“When you’re an alcoholic you might not be able to look after yourself. When I first came to NSNO I didn’t eat – I just about managed to get in the shower.”

Pritesh moved on from the assessment hub into one of NSNO’s staging posts while NSNO worked on his case. While he was at the staging post Pritesh received support and advice from staff. Speaking of one worker Pritesh says:

“It’s because of him that I came through and became a little bit stronger.”

NSNO helped Pritesh to present at the homeless person’s unit at the local authority he has a local connection to. NSNO staff attended all the meetings with Pritesh, supported him through the process and advocated on his behalf when they needed to. The local authority agreed to accommodate Pritesh in a supported housing project. He’s now been settled in his new accommodation for more than six months.

Pritesh receives support from the staff on site at the project and recently started attending weekly counselling:

“It’s only been three weeks but slowly, slowly I’m trying to open up. The counsellor’s trying to find the root cause of why I’m doing what I’m doing.”

Pritesh also attends an alcohol service three times a week. He says: “I want to get off the alcohol, kill that poison”. His keyworker at the hostel helped Pritesh to set up family counselling. This has helped Pritesh to start to rebuild his relationships with his family. They’re all back on speaking terms and Pritesh’s mum sends him home cooked meals at the hostel.

Pritesh’s long term aim is to get back into employment and to either move in with his family or into independent accommodation.