When a person has experienced many setbacks in life, it can be difficult to find a positive way forward. Prior to coming to Route One, our mental health supported accommodation, Alice was finding it hard to cope with mental and physical health needs, a breakdown of familial relationships and substance use issues. We helped Alice gain the support she needed to see a brighter future away from sofa surfing and into independent accommodation.
This is her story.

When Alice was referred to Route One, she had complex needs inclusive of emotionally unstable personality disorder, and challenges with depression and intrusive suicidal thoughts. Additionally, Alice experiences physical health issues that restrict her mobility. In the five years leading up to moving to Route One, Alice had trouble managing her mental health, struggled with alcohol and substance use issues, and had several admissions to hospital.

Alice has a 7-year-old son who lives with his dad and Alice’s parents look after him at weekends. She had not had access to her son for several years as Alice’s parents and ex-partner believed she was an unfit parent, due to her fluctuating mental health and alcohol and substance use issues.

Alice was sofa surfing at a friend’s, but this relationship broke down, causing her to end up in hospital with suicidal thoughts. This is when BHT Sussex stepped in, as Alice moved to Route One.

Alice’s placement at Route One gave her the stability she needed to address many of the issues she was facing.

Alice was well engaged in her own recovery, and she felt motivated to build a better life for herself, making use of the support on offer. Alice started attending Alcoholics Anonymous and Celebrate Recovery meetings several times a week to help her remain abstinent from substances and alcohol. Alice started a voluntary job at a service for people in recovery from addiction which gave her increased confidence, peer support and a meaningful structure to her week.

Whenever Alice felt suicidal and low in mood, she would reach out for support and benefitted greatly from the emotional support provided by her Route One support worker and the team as a whole.

During her time at Route One, Alice remained abstinent from class A substances and did not misuse alcohol despite her emotional struggles. She was also supported through a hip replacement and was helped to apply for the mobility component of PIP, as well as a free bus pass. This prevented Alice losing her independence and access to the community as a result of her operation.

With this ongoing support in place, her mental health stabilised to the extent she no longer required input from community mental health services. Nine months after moving to Route One, Alice was discharged back to the care of her GP.

Whilst at Route One, Alice gained the skills to live more independently in the community, having managed her tenancy at Route One very well.

Alice was ultimately offered and accepted a one-bedroom council flat and now enjoys living more independently. She is looking to the future with more confidence and optimism.

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