Hilary Newton
Friday 10th September 2021 - 09:00

There is help available

Hilary Newton has been a Phoenix resident since we formed in 2007 and has lived in Bellingham for over 26 years. In December 2020, Hilary was made redundant from her job and discovered the support available through Phoenix after reporting a leak in her roof.  

December 2020 was a tough time for me. I was made redundant from my job and my flat completely flooded due to a leak in my roof. It felt like everything was happening at once! 

I contacted Phoenix as the flood was due to a structural issue and my neighbours and I were waiting for a response. I was put through to my Housing Officer Sorcha who dealt with the problem, and I happened to mention to her that I had been made redundant.   

Not long after, I was contacted by Molly in the Financial Wellbeing team who helped me to apply for a Discretionary Housing Payment which covered my rent while I was out of employment. I was very surprised, I didn’t know that Phoenix offered support like that, and it meant one less thing to worry about while I searched for a new role.  

I was determined to secure a new job and had been checking for vacancies on my phone. It was getting frustrating as most applications required a laptop. That’s when I found out I had been referred for a laptop through the Connected Together scheme and for career coaching through the Roots into Work programme.  

It felt like people were calling from all departments to help! Uche was really encouraging and helped me with job applications and interview techniques. This helped me to build confidence and I got through to the final stage for a job that I went for.  

In April, I managed to secure a temporary role which has now been made permanent! What started as a complaint about the flood, ended up resulting in support and advice.  

It’s important to reach out if you’re unhappy about something or if you need support. Now that I know the services are available, I would definitely recommend them to any other residents going through a difficult time.