'When everything seems to be going against you, remember, an airplane takes off against the wind, not with it.'

After my three children were removed from my care because of on-going domestic violence, I began to drink heavily. It was a way to numb the pain. It was my way to cope; a bad way to cope by my only way at the time.

Eventually I was found a place in a woman's refuge. I was angry, alone and desperate. My drinking, like my life, was completely out of control. I needed to stop. i needed my life back. I needed my children back.

With the help of my friend and the support of the mental health team I managed to stop drinking completely. I knew that I really had no choice. 

I found a job working nights in a factory, and shortly afterwards I was rehoused in a one bedroom flat. My children were allowed to visit me, and eventually were returned to me. I had hope again.

Then came BoB, (Build on Belief) a complete life changer! I came across their weekend service by accident. I was supporting my partner at the time with his alcohol problem, and would go with him to the local treatment service run by CGL (Change, Grow, Life). One Saturday, we decided to 'try out' the new weekend service. 

One that very first day I decided to ask about volunteering with BoB, and within three weeks I was a member of the team!

Three years on and I'm still there, although the partner has long since gone. I'm a different person these days strong, confident and aware of my self-worth. I see things so differently now. 

With all of the help, support and training I have received, I have turned my life around. it hasn't been easy. A few family issues have arisen over the past few years, and if it hadn't been for the understanding and support of the BoB managers and volunteers I don't know how I would have coped in facing these problems. 

It really is one big family at BoB. I've met and worked with some wonderful people.

Newham Volunteer (2018)