Gareth was described as ‘in a bad way’ – wearing soiled clothes and being physically dirty, unkempt, smelly and unwell.
Gareth is a 45-year old man with a learning disability, a hearing impairment and Paranoid Schizophrenia.
Gareth was born in Warwick, but was disowned by his family due to his mental health issues. He can’t remember – or explain – how he came to live in Birmingham, but he spent a long-time street homeless; he says his friends on the street didn’t judge him or make him feel stupid.
A Safeguarding was raised by a Birmingham Hospital when Gareth was brought in with suspected Covid 19 symptoms. He had been brought in by Support Workers from a local Homeless Hostel and was described as ‘in a bad way’ – wearing soiled clothes and being physically dirty, unkempt, smelly and unwell.
Thankfully, Gareth didn’t test positive for Covid 19, but as part of the emergency Covid 19 funding – Gareth was placed in a local Care Home – where he would be safe and his daily support needs met.
Following the duty outlined in the Care Act, Gareth’s Social Worker referred him for a Care Act Advocate to support and facilitate him through the Safeguarding referral.
After a bumpy start – (Gareth had been upset about not having the cigarette that he wanted when they first spoke) – Gareth now has a good relationship with his Advocate, he rings her almost daily! She was able to work with him to find out about his past, how he felt about his current placement, and what he wanted for the future.
Gareth, his Advocate and his new Social Worker are now working to support him through a holistic assessment of his health and social care needs with a view to finding him a permanent place to live. Gareth says as long as it’s near a shop so he can get his cigarettes he’ll be OK!
Gareth, his Advocate and his new Social Worker are now working to support him with a view to finding him a place to live. Gareth says ‘its good to be able to trust someone again’.