One of our Scarborough hosts (and also SASH Trustee), Chris Ridgway, tells us why he got involved with SASH:

I‘ve been hosting for about two and a half years. I knew about SASH from when I lived in York. I’d seen the number of homeless people there and when I realised what SASH did, getting people who have a spare room to help, I thought it was a fantastic idea.

I got involved because I’ve had some difficult times myself. When I was looking for somewhere to live, I realised I was very lucky, because despite my troubles I could afford to look for a home. I knew that I wanted to help other people, do something positive, worthwhile, so I decided to look for a place with one or two spare rooms.

When I started hosting I just did Nightstop and had about 11 young people in the first two months. I absolutely loved it! At first, it did take me outside my comfort zone because I was so fortunate with my own upbringing, for me it was like dipping my toe into a different world.

“I keep doing this because I really enjoy it.”

I was worried about some aspects, but it was just fear of the unknown. They were all very respectful, friendly, grateful. I was impressed at how resilient they are.

I do Supported Lodgings now as well as Nightstop. I’ve found the support I get fantastic. The people at SASH are really helpful, I’ve learnt a lot from them.

I think the best thing I’ve learnt through hosting is that all these young people are just fantastic people. It’s restored my faith in humanity. They’ve all got the potential to be very warm-hearted and have a great future

I keep doing this because I really enjoy it. I couldn’t stop now, knowing I’ve got a spare room and there’s a need out there.

It keeps me doing positive things – having someone to cook a meal for, tidy the house up for, and having the company.

I feel very lucky be able to do this.

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