I’ve always lived in North Devon and I moved to this after-care home in February 2012. It’s the third residential care home that I’ve been in.

My story started in an ordinary family with my Mum and Dad, brother and sister. Somewhere I went down the wrong way and it led to borstal and prison. When I was fifteen and on solvents, My Mum and Dad kicked me out of home and I have been on my own since. I did YOP’s courses with scaffolding and at a factory but they didn’t lead to full-time work.  For a while I slept rough in old buildings. At that time my mum said I was like a zombie. Things got progressively more difficult, I ended up with a burnt leg in the hospital wing of Exeter prison and I was later diagnosed with schizophrenia.

But slowly these days my mind is clearing again and I am looking forward to moving to my own place when one becomes available. My CPN Tracy still sees me regularly and I don’t like to single out any of the workers as they are all good.

I’ve got good at cooking – lasagne, spaghetti Bolognese, sweet and sour chicken and Sunday roasts and I take care of my own medication. I also work as a care worker in St Denny’s Residential care Home and my experience means that I know what I am doing.  I’m taking it day by day and hope for the day when I have full-time paid work.