Sheffield homeless charity gave Paige the greatest gift of all
Paige Kesemeyer has very clear memories of the best gift she ever received…crisp new sheets on a bed she could call her own.
And that is why she is hoping that people will read her story and make a special Christmas gift donation to South Yorkshire youth homelessness charity Roundabout.
Paige explains that after what she describes as a happy and normal childhood, things began to go wrong.
“Dad went to prison, mum had a lot of mental health problems and I cared for my younger siblings and missed a lot of education,” she says.
There came a point, she recalls, when she realised she was no longer part of a secure family unit, culminating in her making desperate calls to Childline and Social Services - a decision that had serious consequences.
“My mum kicked me out and my dad was in one of his bad phases just out of prison so I was 17 and really had no where to go,” Paige recalls.
“In desperation I used my boyfriend’s phone to google youth hostels in Sheffield - and first up was Roundabout.”
Roundabout is South Yorkshire’s youth homeless charity, supporting young people aged 16 to 25 who are homeless or at risk of homelessness.
“A Roundabout worker showed me to my new room – my new home - and I had a single bed, a side table, a wardrobe and some drawers.
“But the thing that stuck out to me was the stuff they gave me - clean bedding, a fresh towel and some toiletries.
“Something as small as a clean set of bedding was enough to make me feel at home.
“I just want to stress how much that bedding actually meant - it sounds really strange to hear someone say bedding changed my life but it was my bedding, it was for me.”
And from that beginning and with Roundabout’s continued support, she continued to build a new successful and happy life.
Today she is a mother and has an Undergraduate and Masters degree and is now training for a career in education.
Visit https://www.roundabouthomeless.org/support-us/christmas/ to find out how you can help.