A single dad has been helped to such an extent by Preston North End Community and Education Trust that he has been able to move his family into a new home.Advertisement
The parent, whose identity remains anonymous for confidentiality reasons, was granted custody of his two children in recent months, after making a full recovery from being sectioned earlier in the year.
He was unable to immediately provide for his children, due to delays in receiving benefits and payment from full-time work, and not having the financial resources or home set-up needed.
Originally the dad of two was referred to the Trust’s Happy Holiday Club by a teacher at his youngest daughter’s school. The club provides physical exercise sessions and nutritious free lunches in school half-term periods for children who receive free school meals.
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The single dad said: “The teacher sent us an email saying that PNECET was providing free school lunches and he thought we would benefit from that.
“That first week that he sent us that, he was aware that I had a crossover with benefits. The second week in, the Trust brought two days’ worth of those lunches. We had nothing.
“I was due to get paid the following week and it took a total of nine weeks from start to finish to get paid. Then on the Friday, we were given two weeks’ worth of food.
“I didn’t need to go out and I was able to tell the other food bank that delivered to us that we didn’t need it, because we then had more than enough.”
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But the Trust’s support went beyond food provision.
When the single dad first resumed care of his children, they only had two sets of clothes each. He received an £80 clothing grant, but that would only go so far, with some of it having to be spent on school PE kit.
“We were given bags and bags of clothes. I don’t even know where I would have got the clothes from. The amount of time I would have had to try to get help to get the clothes, it’s taken so much pressure off.
“Everything we’ve been given, we’re using, and the stuff that hasn’t, we gave it to our school food bank, which is then given out to other children.”
After being granted custody of his children at a particularly challenging time, the support of the Trust over more than two months allowed the single dad to focus on moving forward, culminating in the move to a new and improved home.
“While I’ve been getting to know what the kids do, things have been there that wouldn’t have normally.
“My daughter brushes her teeth four times a day. If that toothpaste wasn’t there, that’d be me having to go out and I’d be thinking, ‘Well, why haven’t I got it?’ and then the pressures of all that. It’s just given me time to get used to being their dad.
“All the support I have got from PNECET has smoothed that process. I haven’t had to worry about those little things. It has given me breathing space.
“It’s massively helped me change my life because it’s given me a break. Now, we’re moving into a house.
“Without the support, we wouldn’t be able to move into this house at all.”
For more about how you can support or receive help from the Trust, email
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What do you think of the Trust’s support for this single dad? Let us know in the comments.