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Support Service - Dumfries and Galloway

The Shelter Scotland Support Service in Dumfries & Galloway is a partnership between Shelter Scotland and Dumfries & Galloway Council. This council-funded project provides a range of vital practical and emotional support for single people, couples and families in the area.

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‘I had been signed off sick from work and been on statutory sick pay for a few weeks. I have never been in a situation to claim benefits before. After paying my rent and some bills I had £17 a week to live off - for food, the meter and a kid. I’ve always worked and when I got into this situation I didn’t realise I could get benefits and help. It’s similar for most people. Roz from Shelter Scotland helped me with my bank statements and payslips.’

Photograph by Yeong Yao Ting


‘I worked as a fisherman - on the boats since I was 13. I went through a rough patch with my girlfriend and drugs and needed to sort myself out. Shelter Scotland helped me get the ball rolling and everything was sorted out really quickly. This is the first time I’m actually staying on my own, and I struggled with paperwork and all. In just a couple of weeks, Shelter Scotland helped me get temporary accommodation. It’s the longest since I’ve been straight and off drugs now, as I’m free here, I’ve cut myself off from the other people I used to hang about with. I’ve got my family here with me and it’s helped a lot… the housing people are brilliant.’

Photograph by Yeong Yao Ting


‘I’ve been in Dumfries since I was 14, apart from 13 years when I was in prison. I then decided to leave everything behind and coming back here is like a fresh start. My original thought a month after coming here was to leave, it’s been hard to settle down in one place. I was also getting bogged down with all the paperwork, and Roz from Shelter Scotland came over to help me through it all. I’m more settled now.’

Photograph by Yeong Yao Ting


‘I’m currently looking for new accommodation because of my health situation. I’m like a prisoner, I’m terrified to go to the shop, or go out because I know what I have to face on the way back. Where I am staying is on a hill and I’m on the second floor. It’s not too bad going down the hill, it’s climbing back up that’s the problem, as I have lung problems. It’s worse now and its deteriorating. I get all my information from the television, that is my education as I can’t read and write. Roz from Shelter Scotland helps me to read all my letters and helps with paying the bills.’

Photograph by Yeong Yao Ting


‘I left my husband about five months ago. He was abusive to me, it was getting too much to handle, so I left him and took the kids and stayed at my mum and dad’s house until the council could get us a temporary house. Shelter Scotland helped me, as there are lots of forms to fill in. I stayed in the temporary accommodation for another two months and now we’ve got a nice home.’

Photograph by Yeong Yao Ting


"I lived in my car for 6 weeks. My parents split up and my dad took the property and kicked me out. I was unable to get housing benefits as I was still a student and left stranded. There are no student halls in Dumfries area… Friends kept me fed, let me use their toilet and internet. I suffer from schizophrenia and I had no fixed address to register for a doctor. Shelter Scotland gave me advice to where I could go to look for funding… and I got funding off the university and that allowed me to get a roof over my head."

Photograph by Yeong Yao Ting


"I’m 75 years old and recently moved into a new home. I’d lived in the same house for 71 and a half years. It was too big and getting old and it wasn’t easy to keep. My foster brother passed away last year. I never had a tenancy before and needed help with sorting out the moving, rent, forms. Shelter Scotland helped me to find somewhere that was close to supermarkets and transport."

Photograph by Yeong Yao Ting