Ben’s story

17 Feb 2021

At age 51, Ben* found himself needing wellbeing support, so he came to The Wallich.

Poor mental health and substance misuse left Ben unable to deal with day-to-day life.

The Wallich’s Swansea Prevention and Wellbeing Service (PAWS) were able to work with Ben to get him on the road to recovery.

Here’s Ben’s story

Life before The Wallich

“I was run down and in a bad place with suicidal thoughts. I was suffering with depression.

I was getting nowhere and no one would help me. I was a drug addict and had no money or food.

I was struggling with my health and mobility and could not manage living in my flat.”

Support throughout a pandemic

“My support worker, Fiona, took the pressure off me and helped me do things I didn’t know how to do.

She helped me get food parcels and move to a better flat near my family.

She always took the time to talk and listen to me and let me unload. She greatly improved my mental health.

I’ve hidden my drug problem for years. My support worker was the first person I spoke to about it and helped me access services.

For the first time in 20 years, I am drug free.”

The present and future

“I love my new flat and my mental health is better.


I’m getting there with help from my support worker and my Community Drug and Alcohol Team (CDAT) worker.

I feel I am on top of things and greatly appreciate all the help I have received.

I want to remain free of drugs. Due to ill-health, I don’t have long left to live and want to make the most of it.

I feel more positive about my future.

Without The Wallich, I wouldn’t be where I am now. They have greatly improved my mental health and living conditions and helped me cope with my bad health.”

Fiona, Ben’s support worker, said:

“When I first met Ben, he was struggling with his physical and mental health and drug addiction.

He felt overwhelmed with debts, rent arrears, court appearances and poor living conditions.

He couldn’t face opening his mail or attend appointments on his own.

Following months of support, he’s engaged well and made massive steps to turn his life around.

I’ve seen positive changes in his mood and wellbeing.

His confidence to deal with difficulties continues to increase and he now has a positive outlook on life.

It has been a pleasure working with him.”

*Ben is a pseudonym to protect the client’s identity 

The Wallich works throughout Wales to help people facing homelessness and address issues which puts people at higher risk of homelessness.

Find out more about Swansea Prevention and Wellbeing Service (PAWS).

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