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Former homeless man backs funding for Glasgow project

The Glasgow Homelessness Network has been given half a million pounds in funding.

A former homeless man has described a half a million pounds funding boost to tackle homlesseness in Glasgow as 'life changing'.

David Ramsay, who grew up in Pollok, now works for the Glasgow Homelessness Network but said his life began spiralling out of control when he was just a teenager.

"I went to prison at 16 for the first time. I spent two years in prison at that time and then I got out and then I got sentenced to six and a half years after that.

"A lot of people when you get into the system like myself, it's very difficult to get out of it."

He was left homeless after selling his home due to a relationship breakdown and spent two years sleeping on friends sofas and in spare rooms.

David says the experience left him feeling suicidal.

"I just had enough, I was just beat. And I think sometimes it takes that. Sometimes it takes for you to admit you're beaten and it's quite a hard thing for people to do."

David believes early intervention is key.
David believes early intervention is key. STV

After seeking help, David has gone on to help shape the Glasgow Homelessness Network project, which has received an award of £490,705.

The organisation received the money from the National Lottery fund, which will be used by communities in Pollok and the Gorbals to prevent people ending up on the street.

Homelessness projects are at the focus of over £3m in National Lottery funding which will help prevent Scots losing their tenancies and becoming homeless.

Glasgow Homelessness Network and YPeople in Edinburgh are two of the projects focusing on making a difference to those at risk of becoming homeless.

Shelter, The Marie Trust, Glasgow Night Shelter for Destitute Asylum Seekers, Community Law Advice Network, The Rock Trust and Crisis UK have also been awarded funding.

'In places like Pollock we need to create opportunities for people to see they can make a difference, that their life isn't mapped out.'
David Ramsay

David says that the funding will help seek out people in Glasgow who are looking for support.

"The defining moment for me was that I wasn't getting enough support and the difference with this is that we'll be able to bring a lot of agencies together and actually actively seek out the people who need the help."

"In places like Pollock we need to create opportunities for people to see they can make a difference, that their life isn't mapped out."

David adds that some people in the area don't even realise that they are living in poverty and believes that early intervention will stop people going down the same path he did as a teenager.

"What we are going to do with this funding is to make sure that we get in early, early intervention, and prevent this from happening to people so that they don't need to spend the rest of their life with this defining moment of 'I was homeless', with all the baggage that comes with it.

"That will have a big impact for the rest of their lives."

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