Our Volunteer Coordinator, Ben and student intern Barkat were happy to meet Karen, Colin and their three daughters late last month to discuss their housing journey and the support received from Housing Options Scotland. Thank you to the family for being prepared to share their story.
Karen, her partner Colin and their 3 children had been living in Govan in their own three-bedroom house. The property was a new build and perfect for their situation at the time.
However, with her young daughter, Alexandra, growing up and requiring extra support to provide for her needs, Karen and Colin were extremely concerned about the future. Lifting and carrying Alexandra up and down the stairs was becoming increasingly difficult and unsafe – especially as she was growing older. Both were fearful of suffering a fall, which would be detrimental, not only to themselves but also to their young daughter. Therefore, the family were looking for accessible accommodation on the ground floor to meet Alexandra’s growing needs and minimise risk of any potential accidents.
For a couple of years, Karen and Colin had been raising and discussing their concerns with the council, social workers, occupational therapists and other relevant departments. Following multiple meetings with Glasgow City Council and city builders, some suggestions about how to extend or adapt the house to meet Alexandra’s needs were given thorough consideration. Ultimately, however, these options were not financially viable. In the meantime, Glasgow City Council referred the family to Housing Options Scotland (HOS) where she was introduced to Olivia, Housing Options Scotland Head of Casework Services. Olivia explained a range of different options available to them, including the LIFT scheme. Karen said:
“Olivia knew a lot about the scheme, and we were given detailed information on how we can qualify for the scheme, the application procedure and how long it would take”
HOS provided guidance and support throughout the process of applying to the LIFT scheme and soon after applying, the family received the wonderful news that she was successful.
“During the process Housing Options communicated with us to check how we were are getting along and it was nice to know that they were thinking of us”.
After looking at few houses, Karen and Colin were able to find “the right accommodation at the right price with the specific adaptions to suit Alexandra’s needs. This all happened within 9 months which was quite quick”.
The family are absolutely delighted with their new home which has a downstairs en-suite bedroom for Alexandra and nicely caters for the needs of the rest of the family too. Although initially quite concerned about moving out of Glasgow City Council and having to move school, the family are very happy now the children are well settled in and especially with Alexandra’s school which has an outstanding reputation.
“People in situation like ours should think outside of the box and take advantage of the help available such as Housing Options Scotland and LIFT scheme as we would have never ever been able to afford the new house ourselves”