Margaret’s Story: making the most of community

August 4, 2023

Little did Margaret know that one conversation with Maureen (Community Engagement Officer) would lead to a new social circle and a healthier life.

Earlier this year, Maureen organised a ‘Crafternoon’ for tenants at the Morley Community Centre and encouraged Margaret on our Committee of Residents and Tenants (CORT) to attend. In the session, they did some card making and to her surprise, Margaret really enjoyed it. Foundation Housing offered to pay for her membership at the centre, and she has been going every week since.

“I’ve never done card making before but now I love it. I take the bus and go every week; I want to go more often,” she says.

The pandemic made Margaret fearful of public spaces and struggling with loneliness, she found it hard to stay engaged with others. Since she has started card making, she has formed a nice social group with the women in her card making sessions and has been encouraged to take up healthier habits – she has even quit smoking! All of this has made her feel less anxious going out into the community and has made her feel more joy in her day-to-day life.

“The groups are kept small, so it isn’t overwhelming but there are some lovely women there who actually have helped me quit smoking. It’s also given me the confidence to go out and do other things which I never would’ve done before. Even my sister is very happy that I’ve started doing this.” she says. Connected and empowered are two pillars of Foundation Housing’s Positive Tenancies Framework and it is fantastic to see the positive impact that the Community Engagement team is having on our tenants’ lives. Well done, Margaret!