Boater F lives alone on his own boat, but is cared for by other boaters, some of who’s predicament is not too dissimilar from his own. Together they form a small community on one of our smaller canals. F suffers from ADHD, and his medication causes depression. In turn this has led to an alcohol dependency. He drinks, he says, to raise his spirits. It probably works.
Some weeks ago, WWCs Liz and Christine visited another member of this group and had the opportunity to help out. The group remembered the Waterways Chaplaincy and encouraged F to get in touch through the Website. One of his friends made the contact for him.
Because of his ADHD and his alcohol dependency, F is unable to obtain work. He is in receipt of Universal Credit, which is insufficient, especially as much of it gets spent in the pub. On the day Senior WWC Charles Garven visited he had 2 immediate needs. He had no food, this was easily taken care of with a parcel from the foodbank. But he also had no clothes. He literally only had the clothes that he was wearing, and his shoes, a pair of old trainers that had more holes than a Swiss cheese were size 14. “Finding size 14 in charity shops is impossible!”
I was able to place an ‘Emergency Appeal’ for clothes in our church’s weekly news sheet. One of F’s friends, was able to give me a list of appropriate sizes. In three days I has collected five large bags of suitable clothes, some of which was brand new and purchased especially. The list included several of each trousers, shirts, T shirts, jumpers, socks, boxers, a coat, pyjamas, a blanket, towels and a pair of size 14 trainers!
Boater F must now be the best dressed man on the towpath!