Kelly, 18, lived in a broken old caravan
Kelly’s* life was turned upside down as a teenager when her father died. Her mother took it very hard. In time she found a new partner, but within two years he also passed away suddenly. This broke Kelly’s mother, and tragically she poured out all her pain and anger on Kelly.
Life at home became worse and worse. Kelly was eventually kicked out of home by her mother, who became increasingly abusive. Kelly was 18 at the time and had nowhere to go.
She ended up living in an old caravan in the front yard of a friend’s house. The van was in bad shape, with a hole in the floor that Kelly covered over with a rug. After a few weeks she was asked to move on from her friend’s yard, so Kelly had the caravan moved out onto the street.
Eventually Kelly reached out for help, and Mission Australia provided her with crisis accommodation immediately. At the beginning, Kelly was frightened, depressed and very upset. Early on she would throw child-like tantrums, but in time grew to trust and respect the people helping her. She said our case workers were the first people who had listened to her in years.
Her attitude continued to improve. With our support, Kelly completed a series of education and employment workshops and secured a part-time job at a supermarket. She’s since moved into transitional accommodation and has started a new full-time job.
Incredibly, Kelly has also reached out to her mother to try to rebuild their relationship, and the early stages of this have been promising.
Independence is precious
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*Name changed to protect the identity of the people we help
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