A man who found himself homeless for several years after battling an alcohol addiction is getting behind a recycling campaign launched by the charity which helped turn his life around.
Phil Caizley found himself without a place to call his own until he was finally helped by Emmaus North East, which has a branch in South Shields.
He was given the chance to undergo an 11-month programme at a rehabilitation unit to help him overcome his addiction to alcohol and help him back on his feet.
However, following completion of the programme, he didn’t feel ready to re-join society, and was given the chance to instead join the charity which helped him.
He now supports its recycling project, which collects unwanted household items, in good condition, for free.
The items are then sold in Emmaus shops in Hebburn and Low Fell.
With Recycle Week 2018 taking place this week, he is encouraging people to think about the charity the next time they are having a clear-out of household items.
Praising the charity for its help, Phil said: “Emmaus genuinely does feel like a home.
“The biggest opportunity it gives us is a window – the chance to sit back, take a breath and think of exactly where I am and where I want to go.
“I spent quite a lot of time alone when I was drinking, and a lot of my social skills fell away. They take quite a bit of work to get back.”
Emmaus North East, helps 15 people who have experienced homelessness and social exclusion to rebuild their lives by providing a home, support and meaningful work for as long as the individual needs.