When Rebecca first arrived at Livingstone Road, her confidence was extremely low and she was underweight and unkempt, which was due to her being homeless. While living on the streets, she became very vulnerable and had been taken advantage of by people she thought were her friends that she had made when she was homeless. She suffered various forms of abuse by so called friends she made on the street.
Team members observed her personal hygiene was not very good. Rebecca was not eating well as she thought she had to eat everything at once as “otherwise other people will take her food”. Her mood was quite unstable and she was not motivated to do anything all day. Our team worked hard to build a good rapport with Rebecca by gaining her trust and finding out what she likes and what’s important to her.
Our team found out that family was important to her as she had two sons who she had lost contact with. This was raised in her review for the Social Worker to investigate how Rebecca could re-establish contact with her sons. In regards to her physical health, our team took her to the doctors, where it was made evident that she had two different implants which was affecting her mood and causing her pain. Soon after getting one of the implants removed, she began to feel a lot better.
The more comfortable Rebecca got, the more our team began to see a change. Our team created a food plan and encouraged her to stick to it, and she was also supported to prepare home cooked meals instead of ready meals. Team members also liaised with the mental health team to ensure that Rebecca was placed on the right medication. Following a change in medication, our team noticed a massive change in her behaviour and general outlook on life. She really “came out of herself”.
Rebecca agreed to have a monthly pampering day where she would get her nails and hair done and soon got her confidence back. Nowadays at the home, she picks up the phone when it rings, loves to open the door to visitors, helps out around the house, makes teas for everyone, enjoys playing board games, cooks her own meals and likes to share with others as “it makes her happy”!
Rebecca told us that she loves living at Livingstone Road, “being part of a big family” and feels very comfortable at the home. She has progressed to the point where she cleans her room every day with very little to no prompt, and has even thrown away two rubbish bags full of the things that she had found on the street when being homeless. When she placed these in the bin, with a big smile on her face, she said, “I think I found where I am happy to live.”
Livingstone Road is a supported living service in Gillingham, Kent, which supports adults aged 21+ with a traumatic or non-traumatic acquired brain injury, including epilepsy and mental health needs. The service provides a stepping stone for individuals to move towards a more independent life following post-acute rehabilitation where possible and desired by the individual.