Who we help
We help a huge range of people at The Vineyard – the elderly, the homeless, people suffering from mental health issues, people struggling with addictions – the list goes on and on.
Here are just a few of the stories we hear on a daily basis.
Please note that names have been changed to protect the privacy of our visitors.
is the only survivor of a tsunami that killed his extended family of thirteen. He was repatriated as a medical casualty after scavenging and searching for his relatives for two and a half months. Ian abandoned his successful business life and spent eight years wandering the UK without money or any form of support. He was spotted sitting near Richmond Bridge by someone who suggested he should visit The Vineyard. He came to us for just a few days in need of shoes, conversation and comfort. Unfortunately, he was unable to step back into society upon leaving.
was a manager of a top UK hotel before developing manic depression after witnessing extreme violence and then losing his job. He came to us during a period of rough sleeping and we provided support until he was able to enter local social housing.
suffered years of domestic abuse before fleeing her home for the Vineyard. She was so traumatised by her past experiences that she was unable to open the door of the safe house for fear of what might lie within. She was also struggling to walk long distances because of her deteriorating health.
With the help of a partner agency, we placed her in a safe house and established a regime of ongoing support and confidence-building. Now she can walk several miles with ease, is growing in confidence and has moved to her own accommodation.
was volunteering at Sheen’s Missing Persons Bureau when he came to us as a rough sleeper. The charity was chosen for a presentation award by the Queen and our charity shop dressed Anthony in a suit and tie for the occasion. (Our shop is now, really, officially ‘by appointment to her Majesty.’)
is a torture victim and asylum seeker, who came to the UK from Sudan. She was granted asylum accommodation in the borough but statutory benefits would not meet the cost after her asylum status was approved. We supported Kazima for six months while she slept in Ham woods, during which time she had two hospital operations. Kazima needed our extensive advocacy before being housed and helped into part-time employment.
was a trauma nurse working in London hospitals. She could not prevent her younger daughter from dying of anorexia and the older one then passed away after no longer wishing to live without her sibling. Amanda was so traumatised herself she ended up homeless and alone in Richmond Park sleeping with just a blank. Over a few years we have helped her through crisis, built her into our volunteering community and then employment first with us and then in reestablished in her nursing.
is a Middle eastern refugee who witnessed his children murdered by Isis. Without language or means to establish his own status he was imprisoned in the UK before being rehoused locally. He remains a valued daily volunteer which helps his depression and is slowly learning English with ESOL and community help.
was unable to afford a vital brain operation to save his young son and left his family to work in the UK. Without any other issues, Michal was intentionally homeless in order to save and send every penny home and eventually pay for what has been a successful operation. We have now supported Michal with his basic needs through two winters.
was a highly successful global executive working for well known brands. His functional alcoholism finally failed and he came to us destitute and extremely unwell.We supported his medical detox, his placement in the winter night shelter and subsequent volunteering and private accommodation. John continues to add high value to us with his skills and networks and is partially returning to the corporate world, but now intent on using his experience to support others.
was homeless, aggressive, and uncooperative with severe mental health issues associated with cannabis use. For over a year Susan was welcome amongst us and also occasionally banned for extreme behaviour issues. Following her accommodation, and ceasing substance abuse, Susan has moved forward in our empowerment programme and is currently exploring possibilities of apprenticing with one of our supportive international corporate partners.
The Vineyard is wholly dependent on financial donations and we can’t help people like Kazima, Mary and Anthony without on-going support. Even a small donation can make a big difference so please share any amount you can afford.