When she was just 13 years old, Esme* moved to the UK to live with her mum. Tragically, her mum passed away only a week later. The only family Esme had to turn to was an auntie who she didn’t know that well and had never had a strong relationship with.

The relationship was strained as personalities clashed. When Esme turned 18, her auntie threw her out, believing that she was old enough to fend for herself. With nowhere else to go, Esme went to stay with a friend on a temporary basis.

Esme found a job and went on to rent a room. However, she found it much more difficult than she expected, with no experience of living independently and no support network around her. She ended up moving from one place to the next, staying with various people, with no consistent place to call home.

It was at this point that Esme contacted Step by Step. A couple of days later, she moved in to Foyer accommodation.

“Step by Step welcomed me and have helped me to follow my dreams,” Esme said. “I now have a support system I can rely on.”

Step by Step staff encouraged Esme to think about her goals and how she was going to achieve them. Esme now has a part-time job as a support care worker and is going back to college. Having a safe place to live and access to regular support means that Esme is looking forward to the future for the first time since she lost her mum.

*Name changed to respect privacy.

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