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Easton's Story

Easton's Story

It's "home time" at school. But what if you have no place to call home?

This was the reality for Easton.

In April 2022, aged just 18 and still at school, Easton endured a family breakdown that had a severe impact on his mental health. Faced with this challenging home environment, Easton made the difficult decision to leave. Rather than go back to the family home, he resorted to sleeping in his car, while still attending school.

For a brief period, he was able to stay on a friend’s sofa, but this was short lived. Easton was faced with an uncertain future and deteriorating mental health. He was able to access mental health support and a bed at Simon Community’s Foyer in Belfast, a specialist temporary accommodation service for young people.

To begin with, Easton was shy and very nervous at the Foyer. During his first few weeks, he rarely left his room – only venturing out to go to school or get his shopping .

But, when an accidental tripping of the electric forced him to poke his head out the door of his flat, he began to connect with the community of young people around him. He was also able to work with the Simon Community team to receive qualifications and work towards independent living.

‘The staff has supported me with a bit of everything, from the ups and downs of mental health to finding the right location to move onto. They are always there.’

Over the past 18 months, Easton has undergone a remarkable personal transformation. From a shy newcomer, he now serves as the Foyer's client representative, actively participating in community activities, collaborating with volunteers on outdoor projects, and enrolling in courses focused on mental health awareness and health and social care.

Looking ahead, 19-year-old Easton has ambitious dreams for the future. His immediate goals include securing a place of his own and a stable job to start building a life for himself.

‘I am not sure what exactly I want to do for work just yet, but I would like to get a job working for a charity like Simon Community or even working in the NHS.’

In Easton’s own words:

I’m thankful for the Simon Community for being there to give me somewhere to live while I look for my own place. I have met so many good people while living here, both staff and clients alike that I am glad to have met. The staff in the Foyer are an amazing group who have helped and supported me so much. From helping me while in my darkest period to growing as a person.

Before I moved here, I was quiet and shy but now I am the client rep of the Foyer, doing things I wouldn’t have even thought I could achieve two years ago.’

We work with young people like Easton every day. But we couldn’t do it without your support.

Please consider giving a gift today. Just £45 could help provide emergency food or clothing to those who arrive at our doors with nothing.

There are over 55,000 people legally classified as homeless in Northern Ireland. Across prevention projects, our 20 accommodation sites across Northern Ireland, or the services we provide to support people to move into a home of their own, the work of Simon Community is vital and often life-saving.

Northern Ireland is in the midst of a homelessness crisis, and it is because of people like you and your generosity that we have been able to continue our life changing, life-saving services.

If you can, please continue to support our work by donating to our Spring Appeal. A donation of any size can help someone like Easton.

Click here to donate.

If you or someone you know are at risk of becoming homeless please phone our 24/7 homeless support line at 08001712222 or visit

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