Kate describes her childhood as brilliant – she was well brought up in amazing house. Things changed when tragically her dad committed suicide when she was just 11 years old.
“It basically broke the family a bit. We all kind of separated within the next two years after that.”
That was when Kate’s life spiralled into a life of drugs and dependency. “By the age of 14 I was doing heroin with my some of my family. I have been on heroin for probably almost 9-10 years, also the Crack [cocaine]. Basically, I ended up homeless in Bath for about two to three years, just me and my brother.
I was at the point where I had been on drugs for so long that it was just a way of healing pain, getting rid of the pain and realising that I had no family left. We had all kind of separated and I wanted it back.
Kate found support whilst staying at the Julian House emergency hostel in Bath. “I joined the service with Julian House and basically got all the support I needed. I had a key worker, she was amazing, and a few friends that supported me through it, helped me whilst I was ill. [I had] hundreds of talks with my key worker about college to keep me motivated. Definitely something that got me away from it all and saved me. I’ve been clean now for almost a year, off all the drugs and I am now looking at college courses and trying to get into my next stage of housing.
I kind of decided I needed to get my life back on track, get of the drugs and start my own career, which is something I’ve always dreamt of. It was my motivation to get better really.”
Kate is now living in one of the charity’s supported housing projects and hoping to go back to college “I’m 100% not sure what career I want, I’ve thought about fashion design, music or animal care. I want to qualify and get a forever job to have enough to get my own home and maybe start my own family one day”.
Supported Housing Team Leader at Julian House, Johannes has been very inspired by Kate. “I’ve known Kate for about a year now and one thing that I have seen is that she is always going to try again, even with slip ups now and again, she always tries again.”
For Kate, this Christmas will be lot more positive, but still a challenge “It’s going to be hard still” Kate said “but it’s all better when you know it’s going to better next year as well. Staying positive and keep marching on. I have my own space, my own room and I couldn’t do it without the support of my key worker. It’s about those moments when you are having a bad day and you can have a chat with your key worker, you know you’ve got that support around you. It really helps.
When asked how Kate keeps motivated, she said “In every adult there is still that little child in them. One thing I always thought about as a kid was to one day have my career and family, that’s what keeps me going. I just want my family back and to have a life, a real life.”