Wednesday 4 March 2020
“At 19 years old, I found myself homeless. I was dealing with mental health issues, depression and anxiety. I wasn’t doing much at all, and I was becoming more and more alone. I had a very negative outlook on life, and had no aspirations or hopes for my future. After five years of living on the streets of Wellington, I found my new home – Britannia House (The Paa).
When I first got to The Paa, I was really nervous, but everyone gave me a warm welcome. It was all very overwhelming at first, but the positive atmosphere really helped me get settled in quickly, and I began to feel good about life again.
The comradery is one of my favourite things about this place. It feels like a family. There is a lot of support available inhouse, like social work, counselling, advocacy, and health services. All the staff are here for you as well. They keep motivating you and pushing you to succeed. I’ve never seen this level of personal support anywhere else.
Each day is usually filled with appointments, chores, house meetings, and hanging out with the other kainoho (residents). I’m also proud to be studying Te Reo. It’s a beautiful and powerful language, and learning something new reminds me that I am capable, and there are opportunities out there for me.
Everything I’m doing is helping me
deal with my issues and get my life back on track.
My whole outlook has completely changed. I am still a little unsure of exactly what’s next for me, but it’s empowering to know that there are people backing me. All I can do is be open to giving new things a go, and try my best.
I’m excited about starting the next chapter of my life, and just being a regular person again. I’m looking forward to getting a job, finding a house, and one day having a family. I want to say thank you so much to everyone here. You are doing seriously good work!
We’ve seen a massive transformation in Aiden. The life really returned to his eyes as he became more engaged in our community. He has shown amazing leadership skills, and you can see how much he loves being here. We are delighted to have offered Aiden a Kaitiaki (Caretaker) role. The next step will be training him as a Hoa Aropaa (Peer Support Person).”
Kieran Meredith, Media & Communications Manager, email@example.com