Sonia* (34 years) and her daughter Amy* (9 years) had been in a private rental for six years, when she came to LinkPeople.
Sonia had fallen behind in the rent and had just been before the Tenancy Tribunal as a result. From the outside, it looked as though this was simply about money, but when Lydia from LinkPeople spent time unpacking what was really going on, the truth emerged.
Sonia’s ex-partner, who was in prison for assaulting both her and Amy, was due for release. His friends had been around, threatening Sonia that he was going to come back to the Christchurch home. Understandably terrified and looking to flee, the stress had fueled Sonia’s addiction and mental health issues and she had stopped paying the rent.
Lydia linked up with Aviva, the family violence service in Christchurch, who confirmed with Probation that Sonia’s ex-partner was in another town and subject to electronic monitoring with an ankle bracelet.
Lydia then explained Sonia’s situation to rental agents Ray White, who had no idea of the struggles she had been experiencing. They agreed to let her stay if she could get back on track with the rent.
Work and Income also agreed to pay the debt once the situation had been properly explained.
As a result of LinkPeople’s involvement, Sonia and Amy have sustained their tenancy and can continue to live in the place they have called home for the past six years.
*Names have been changed to protect privacy