P3 received a referral for OP on 10th October 2015 from his probation officer.
34 year old OP was adopted at the age of 2 with his siblings. He describes his family as caring and supportive despite being sent to live with his uncle at a young age because of his behaviour. OP’s behaviour and lifestyle continued to spiral and consequently he started to take class A drugs at the age of 18. He also began to build a hefty criminal record with most offences being theft; he has since been in and out of prison during adulthood. OP has had minimal contact with his family since the death of his twin brother two years ago.
When referred OP was recently released from prison, he was homeless and having to use the night shelter at YMCA. Before the initial needs assessment P3 Link Worker managed to link OP in with the YMCA and get him a room there. After getting the room OP spent all his spare money on clothes and other things to avoid buying illegal substances. After this positive start however, OP was not ready to consider any form of counselling or any idea of playing football. It was difficult to make contact with him and he was almost immediately recalled back to prison and lost his room at the Hostel.
After his short sentence, P3 have linked OP back in with his drugs worker and his support worker at the Hostel. He is currently using the night shelter again on the waiting list for a room. Nevertheless he appears optimistic and is happy to wait while his support worker does her best to get him a room again. OP and I went shopping on his first day of release where he spent a large portion of his spare money on a new smart phone. This was partly to avoid spending it illegal substances and to keep him busy, as well as making contact more possible for P3, which is something that has been a barrier before.
OP has mental health problems and has no family or friends in this area. In the past he has struggled to open up to anyone, however he has started to open up about his brother and relationship with his family. It is clear that OP has struggled for some considerable time with his confidence and self-worth which is extremely low and is the reason he does not speak to his family or continue with other things that he loves such as football. At this point OP has expressed his want to look at sports college courses and football opportunities. He has also decided that he is ready to start making contact with his family again and hopefully change his thinking patterns. Whilst he has been far too low in the past to consider counselling, OP has been participating in some one-to-one mindfulness with his OM which appears to have positive effects and he is gradually starting to become more engaged in things that are good for him. OP has identified that he has punished himself in the past because he feels guilty but he is now very keen and can’t wait to get started with college and/or football.
OP’s usual Link Worker was on leave for a couple of days, so another Link Worker rang the Hostel to check if he was ok and if he had stayed at the Night Shelter.
Staff member at Hostel said she had sat with OP for most of the previous day as he wanted to keep busy. She had no way of contacting him until this evening but she advised that he had an appointment at the local drug service today. Using this information and other information received from the drug service, contact was made with OP. It transpired OP had nothing planned for the day, and was just biding time until he returned to the Night Shelter. The Link Worker arranged to meet up for a coffee and to have a look at some local services. The Link Worker also took OP to a local Mental Health Service and got his lunch for him from their café, as he had not eaten that day.
As P3’s Link Worker and OP sat in the cafe, a man named Joe started talking to OP and shared that he was formerly alcohol dependant, but had been alcohol free for 8 years. He spoke candidly to OP, and OP shared information about his own addiction. We spent some time looking through leaflets from other local services and OP took some that were of interest to him. He was particularly interested in a Brazilian film that was to be shown in place in Liverpool (OP had previously informed that he was born in Brazil and would like to visit there one day).
OP was given a tour of the building and was really interested in the Arts group, relaxation room, and the creative writing classes as he said he finds writing therapeutic. He also opened up about very recent suicidal thoughts and how he feels he would benefit from some support with his depression/anxiety. The staff member spoke of the groups they have looking at these issues and told OP that he can pop in and talk to staff anytime he needs a chat. OP said that he could see himself using the relaxation room there because in the past, when he has felt really low, he has not been able to access a quiet space for himself
OP was impressed with the facilities offered at this Service and signed up to be a member. OP was also made aware of the weekend activities there, and he showed a particular interest in the 3 Course Sunday Lunch members can get there for £3.50. Given that he had already spoken of only having £2 left from his benefits, petty cash was used to pre pay for OP to have a roast dinner there on Sunday, to encourage him to go there and stay linked in.
OP received a phone call whilst out, to inform that there was a room available for him at the hostel now.
The Link Worker plotted several things on a timetable for OP to help him organise (and fill) his days, and he said he would put it up in his room at the hostel. The Link Worker also gave OP a P3 notepad and a bic pen to keep notes of things for himself, and he wrote a short poem about his current situation.
OP spoke of always having a sense of not knowing who he is, from the age of 10 - wondered if linking him in with Brazilian culture more may help with this so emailed Khalid from Black and Ethnic Minority scheme in Probation to see if there is anything suitable. Brazilian ex pat service based in Liverpool, sourced.
P3s Link Worker continue to support OP and encourage him to link with other services.