‘I’d Have Brushed Everything to the Side’

David is a single dad with four young daughters.

Struggling with unemployment since 2010, employers look at David unfavourably when they realise he can’t read or write properly. His problems with literacy also impact his ability to fill in forms, which is a problem with finding work as well as for legislative and legal purposes to request government help with his children.

Living in a house with four girls has had its challenges for David, one of which was sleeping arrangements. David was sleeping downstairs on the sofa to give two of his daughters his bed, as there were only two single beds besides his own.

David’s life has been a daily struggle and he was offered assistance from Safe Families for Children after he asked Social Services if there was any way anybody could help. Safe Families organised a volunteer to assist David with any forms he needed to fill in and to help him with his reading and writing.

Resource Friends were also found and they offered two second-hand single beds which meant David had his bed back and all the girls had beds of their own. Family Friends, Harry and his wife, were mobilised and they would spend quality time with David and the girls. David said that really Harry and his wife were just like grandparents, talking and playing with the girls. David was socially isolated which meant Harry’s presence was not only appreciated by the girls but even more so by David.

David says that without Safe Families, these things which have helped pick him back up wouldn’t have been possible: important forms would get put to one side and forgotten about; David would still be sleeping on the sofa; and he wouldn’t have been able to speak to people like Harry.