Pathways For All People Successes
We are, of course, proud of all of our success stories here at Pathways for For All People. Here are just a few examples:
Jay came from a middle-class background, with his parents separating at a young age. Jay often found himself caught up in the middle of his parents’ relationship breakdown. He did well at school and went on to university, but in his late teens was diagnosed with cancer. He was hospitalised for a few months for treatment resulting in having to pull out of university.
While in hospital he was told that he wouldn’t live past his mid 30’s.
Jay had suffered anxiety since his parents’ relationship breakdown; after battling with cancer and uncertain about his life past 30, he used alcohol to self-medicate to ease his anxiety.
Jay managed to find employment as a recruitment officer; but drank heavily to mask his feelings. After his life became totally unmanageable, Jay moved into Pathways for all People and with the support of the program became alcohol-free and now has the tools to work on issues of anxiety when it arises.
He is now living in the local community and working full-time for a large charity as a recruitment officer. He is now married with a daughter.
Jay’s 35th birthday has recently been and gone and he has no signs of the cancer returning.
If and when needed, Jay liaises with Pathways for all People for support.”
When Gary arrived at pathways he was in a state of despair, he felt invisible, broken and ready to give up. He could not see a way out of the life he was living feeling alone and totally powerless.
Gary had struggled for many years with his mental health, depression and anxiety. For years he took his medication and tried his hardest to succeed but was consumed by feelings of emptiness. He felt lost and struggled with severe mood swings which like a light switch would shift in the blink of an eye from a state of hopeless loneliness to anger and frustration.
This had a severe effect on his sleeping pattern, appetite and energy levels which plummeted leading to an ever-increasing sense of hopelessness. As time passed Gary had turned to alcohol to fill the feeling of emptiness as he struggled with growing feelings of deeper and inescapable depression.
He did not feel like he fitted into society and was struggling with feelings of deeper depression and a sense of hopelessness. He was unable to cope with social interactions, unable to function without alcohol, tight-lipped, nervous and anxious around his friends. Gradually he lost social connection with the people he loved and cared about, family and friends. Some were unable to understand his absence at family gatherings, he was no longer the life and soul of the party but a lonely recluse, a shadow of the social family man he once was.
Having lost all-purpose, self-esteem and confidence Gary felt suicidal, one day it all became too much and he turned to prescription pills in an attempt to take his own life and take away the indescribable pain and suffering. Gary woke up in a hospital bed all alone. There were no visitors. His friends and family had lost all contact with him and he wished he would be better off alone. Having cut all ties with his family and friends he was homeless with no place to stay.
Karen, the founder of Pathways For All People, was alerted to Gary’s situation by the council and social services who had concern for his mental and physical condition as he was no longer self-dependent, experiencing psychosis, tremors and suicidal thoughts. As he recovered from the physical bruises and stitches he faced ongoing and severe emotional distress. After several visits from Karen and a number of psychiatrists at his bedside, Gary was told that if he was able to give up drinking and take on a full personal recovery programme he would be offered counselling to help him open up about the traumas of his past, cognitive behavioural therapy to manage his on-going depression, educational support through college programmes and most importantly a roof over his head until he was able to stand on his own two feet.
No person’s journey at Pathways for all people is the same, with the majority of residents struggling with past traumas, a history of neglect, and abuse. All residents are looked after with a bespoke recovery plan to build confidence, skills and value to the community with the end goal of complete independence. Karen worked closely with Gary to focus on his strengths and give himself a belief in his ability. After four weeks of initial therapy, it quickly became obvious that Gary excelled at supporting Karen with day to day tasks around the houses, helping service users to move into their new safe haven at Pathways for all people he was able to use his experience to help others.
Now Gary is of service to all of the service users within the Pathways organisation having assumed the role of Volunteer Housing assistant alongside Karen. On Top of his volunteering duties, Gary has been studying for an NVQ in social care and assistance. Despite the difficulties of Covid19 and feelings of isolation due to his ongoing counselling support and purpose within the organisation, Gary has started a running club which has seen popular uptake amongst residents at Pathways for all people helping to boost mental health, morale and social activity. After weeks of training, Gary has built up from 1K to a 6K run and has ambitions to run 15K for charity! Gary has never felt such a feeling of achievement as a result of the freedom from the support given to him by Karen and Pathways for all people.
Gary now feels understood, valued and driven to achieve his goals of becoming a full-time support worker in the community. He has nearly completed his NVQ in social care and looks to pass his final exams in four weeks time. His main passion and the why behind his ambition is to show others there is a very fine line between anxiety and depression, success and freedom and that anyone can fall into a life of hopelessness but with the right support in place for each individual and the desire to recover others can follow the same path as him and turn their lives around. Gary is now carrying the torch in the community passing on his first-hand experience to help other vulnerable adults to recover as he has.
In September of 2020, Gary has signed up to a 15K charity fundraiser to support other vulnerable and homeless people in the Dorset community who have a desire to get the support he had and stand on their own feet with all proceeds donated to the Pathways For All People charity.