John’s Story

Sudden life changes and major upheaval can knock the best of us off our feet. SASH was able to help John put his life back together. 

John (not his real name) is a retired farmer. He came to SASH through major upheaval and changes in his life. He is now settled in supported housing, feels safe and enjoys following the Wolves and the cricket with his ever-expanding group of friends!

John grew up on his father’s tenancy farm in east Shropshire. He attended the local grammar school and enjoyed playing the traditional sports of rugby and cricket. Eventually, he took over the tenancy from his father, and enjoyed all that life as a dairy farmer offered. 

And then one day that changed. There were new challenges for dairy farmers to overcome that were previously unknown. John’s son left home to complete studies at university. And then his wife decided she wanted a change and their marriage came to end. The stability of John’s life slipped out of his control. It’s not an uncommon story and it’s not uncommon that when we find ourselves in situations like that, that we need extra help to get through it. That’s exactly what happened to John. It led John to experience mental problems, which are still an issue today, though well under control. 

John now enjoys where he lives, the group of friends he has built around him, and the life he leads. Whether it’s following a Wolves game with his family and friends, or engaging in the wider world around him. He’s also immensely proud of his son who is carving out a fabulous career flying helicopters and maintains a close relationship with him.

At the time when things fell apart for him, John spent time living back home with his mother. He struggled with his mental health and his GP eventually referred him to the mental health team and he was assigned a social worker, who eventually put him in touch with SASH.

SASH gave John the support, time and space he needed to find his way. He says it was a fresh start for him. A chance to reflect and rebuild.

SASH offers a safe environment – it’s quite protective. When you get to know the other residents, and share stories, it helps to put things in perspective for you. Hearing what other people have been through can help you realise your problems may not be that bad!

John spent four years at SASH before moving into the supported housing apartment he lives in today. He says the time he spent at SASH has meant he has been able to embrace his current living environment and he is enjoying it immensely.

It’s quite social! There are 27 apartments here – there is Bingo, Skittles, Boccia – a different activity each day. We had a Christmas party, Christmas meal… I’ve met new people, new friends. I’m the Treasurer for some of the events and I collect the resident’s lottery each week. I know lots of people here. It’s been really positive moving here!

I’m thankful for the support SASH gave me. It helped me find my way again after a tough time. It became my home and I always knew the support was there if I needed it.