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Alisia Jennens

Since moving to Weston Foyer 18 months ago, 19-year-old Alisia Jennens has gained the confidence to achieve her goals, thanks to support from staff.

SSL Resident Alisia Jennens

Sanctuary Supported Living’s Weston Foyer, in Weston-Super-Mare, provides supported housing for 34 young people aged 16 to 25. The young residents may have faced homelessness due to leaving care, overcoming addictions or a family or relationship breakdown. With support and encouragement from the staff, residents develop their skills, confidence and self-esteem, so that they can one day move on and live independently.

When Alisia arrived, she found it almost impossible to ask for support. Alisia would not speak up for help until things reached crisis point. However, thanks to the personalised support she has received, she has gradually become more confident and able to speak to any member of the team for support and guidance.

Despite struggling with bouts of acute anxiety, Alisia has worked hard to achieve Bronze, Silver and Gold Awards with the Duke of Edinburgh award scheme. She has also continued to volunteer and has trained to become an instructor at her local Army Cadets group, which she joined when she was 14. Through this, Alisia is an active member of her local community, playing the bell lyre (a form of glockenspiel) in the cadets’ band, performing and representing them at Remembrance events.

She continues to be an active member of the foyer community by getting involved in its activities and events, and helping others when they move in, providing her peers with advice and support on arrival.

At Weston Foyer, every resident has a dedicated project worker, who is their main ‘go-to’ member of staff for support and advice. They support residents to gain essential life skills, such as how to maintain a tenancy, as well as paying bills and budgeting. In addition to receiving support to build these skills, Alisia’s worked closely with her project worker to build her own tailored support plan, which encouraged her to think about her life goals and ambitions.

Alisia told staff that she’d like to focus on a future career working with children, and that she’d always wanted to go to university to study Early Child Development. The team then supported Alisia with completing her university applications and applying for student funding. They continue to provide support for her wellbeing and signposting to other services, who can provide more expert help when needed.

Since living at Weston Foyer, Alisia has become more confident and assertive, and is working towards achieving her dreams, knowing that staff are there to support her. She said: “Now I feel I can comfortably talk with any member of staff.”

Gill Carpenter, Project Worker, said: “Alisia has overcome many obstacles, yet remains focussed on her goals in life. The whole team is so proud of everything she has achieved so far - she has an inner strength and a wisdom beyond her years”.

The whole team is so proud of everything she has achieved so far

Gill Carpenter, Project Worker

To find out more about how we support young people, see our young people page or read more resident stories.

Download a printable PDF version of this story (PDF 210KB).


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