"Five days later, I got the keys!"

I came back to the UK because my sister was sick. I arrived with clothes and that was it. I was living in my sister's house. I applied to the local housing association and wasn't very hopeful at all. I got a letter from [the HIV service organisation that was helping me] and gave it to the housing association.

That day I got called in and spoke to the manager...I had already applied to the housing association but I didn't expect to get anywhere for a long time...I think I had waited three months before the letter from [the HIV service organisation]. I think I mentioned it to them and then they gave me the letter, and five days later...I got the keys!

It has a tremendous impact! Before that, I had been living in my sister's house for six or seven months. I hadn't been working and I wasn't getting job seekers allowance or benefits as they said I was a 'non-habitual resident'.

Basically, I was living off my sister and getting extremely depressed. In the same week that I got the keys to the apartment, I got a job in town—so it all happened at once. It made a tremendous difference!

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