Preventing eviction

In August 2013 Mrs AR was referred into the Stonham - Easington Homestay service by local authority housing provider East Durham Homes (EDH).

Mrs AR was in serious arrears with her property and EDH was very close to court/eviction process which could result in homelessness.

The client was quickly assessed along with the rent arrears officer from EDH.

Due to the complex situation the client presented, Mrs AR was quickly prioritised and brought onto service for support.

The case was assigned Lauren Marr (support worker) to work with her.

It became quickly apparent that the client’s substance misuse was the main element in her life that has caused her to negate her responsibilities and resulted in mounting arrears.  

EDH struggled to engage effectively with Mrs AR and was unable to resolve the situation, blocked mainly by her challenging behaviour.

With Lauren’s patience and person-centred approach she was successfully able to investigate Mrs AR finances and benefit entitlement.

Lauren discovered that there was an unresolved break in benefit entitlement which has contributed towards the large amount of arrears for the client.

Over a period of weeks Lauren was successfully able to build a relationship with Mrs AR, and with her tenacity enabled the client to appreciate the gravity of her situation.

Both client and support worked together collating lots of different forms of paperwork from numerous places to try and resolve the housing issue.

Finally EDH received confirmation that indeed Mrs AR had been entitled to benefits over the period where hers went unpaid and a full backdate was paid to the housing provider which amounted to over £2000.

This secured the clients tenancy and she was no longer facing the possibility of eviction.

Although the client’s tenancy was now safe and secure the work with Mrs AR was nowhere near complete. Lauren has since successfully got Mrs AR to access treatment for her substance misuse and is still actively working with her maintain her tenancy to enable her to manage independently.

Lauren is highly regarded as an excellent support worker both internally and externally with other agencies and statutory bodies.  

Lauren very much lives Home Group’s values throughout her daily working practice and is a great asset to the organisation and all her clients.