Darren came to Exeter from Newton Abbot at the end 2015. When the team first encountered him on the streets they offered him the chance to return to Newton Abbot but he declined because he was fleeing drug debts.
From that moment onwards he engaged minimally with the team and rarely accepted a hot drink on morning outreach.
He was allocated a support worker who tried to engage with Darren to do a housing assessment form, but had no luck because Darren was always begging to fund an expensive heroin addiction. His worker asked Darren what he wanted, which turned out to be getting on a methadone script, not housing. They made a referral to RISE, a drug and alcohol support service, but Darren was still using heavily so was busy begging at the time of his appointments, which he missed.
His support worker, Matt, felt like he was getting nowhere with Darren but encouraged him to re-refer himself to RISE. Again, Darren missed several appointments but finally made it to one despite suffering from heroin withdrawal. He continued to keep his appointments with his RISE worker and saw a GP from a local Surgery – the first time he had accessed healthcare in over a year.
Once Darren was managing his heroin addiction, Matt accompanied him to Exeter City Council to make a homeless application. He was found non-priority but Matt rang the Housing Advice team every day for a week until there was a vacancy for him to be housed.
This was the first time Darren had accessed housing for almost two years. It took him a while to engage with his new support worker but he stayed on top of paying his rent with little prompting. Now that he was feeling more settled, he had time to meet Matt and play pool on several occasions.