Homelessness is a brutal reality that many cannot even begin to imagine. Unfortunately, it was the reality for Troy, who was sleeping in his car until March this year.
For ten years, Troy called a housing complex in Tweed Heads, NSW, his home, where he had developed strong friendships and lived with a feeling of security.
One evening at around 11pm, Troy awoke to a banging knock on his door. There was a fire, and everyone had to evacuate immediately. Troy’s life changed instantly.
“I turned to my Neighbour who had just lost his home in the fire and said, ‘mate, we are officially homeless now. What are we going to do?’” says Troy.
“I was lucky to know someone who worked in the kitchen at Agape Outreach in Tweed, and through that connection, I got in touch with someone at Link2home where I secured temporary accommodation to house me straight after the fire.”
Troy lived in his temporary accommodation for three months, and to his surprise, he lived there for nearly six months. When the time came to move out of the house, he faced a crossroads where he couldn’t find an affordable home, so he had no choice but to sleep in his car.
Living in his car for over five months, it was normal for Troy be woken up at 2am by strangers banging on his car window. He felt unsafe in his car and was sleeping in vast amounts of pain due to an accident a few years back leaving him with a metal plate in his spine.
“We didn’t have Troy’s car registration flagged in our system, but as soon as I noticed someone sleeping with their feet out the car, I asked my team if we should interact with him, and I’m glad we did”, says Momentum’s Case Manager Alan.
“It was after a few interactions I learned the severity of Troy’s circumstance and knew he needed a safe and suitable accommodation for his back as soon as possible.”
Since then, Troy’s life has taken an upward turn from living uncomfortably in his tiny car to residing in a temporary motel where he feels safe. Although he is still waiting to secure a long-term house, he feels more hopeful about finding a safe and affordable home.
Troy is addressing his biological, psychological, and social needs holistically. After finding a long-term home, Troy is looking forward to joining a lawn bowls club and getting a new furry friend to replace his beloved cats he lost in the fire.
After facing various challenges over the past year, Troy has felt quite anxious, particularly in social situations. When the chance to attend a Gold Coast Titans game arose, he initially felt hesitant. However, to his surprise, Troy, along with his cousin, a Broncos fan, and a new friend he met at his temporary accommodation, had such a great time they are hoping to attend another game soon.
“I thought of giving up when I was sleeping in my car, but connecting with Momentum has been the best thing that happened to me. Now, I am taking positive steps towards finding stability and security in my life,” Troy said.
If your tenancy is at risk, or you are currently sleeping rough, contact us for help on 1800 387 867 or visit our Specialist Homelessness Services for more information.