Carl’s Story: Carl (not his real name) has been coming along to Zeal for about a year now and considers Zeal to be his second home. Towards the end of last year, home became an unsafe place for him, resulting in him having to move out. This provided our team the opportunity to come alongside Carl and to wrap around him. We were able to support Carl to find a place to stay, helping him to discover the best options forward, and journeying alongside him as he processed through events that had happened at home. While all of this was happening in the background, Carl was involved in planning and running our whanau Christmas party.

Under our guidance, he quickly took a leadership role within the group, delegating tasks and even organising the budget by himself – a first for him. Carl has said that since coming to Zeal, he has come out of his shell a lot more and has pushed past his expectations for himself and his life. He also acknowledges the effect that coming along to our programmes and events has had in helping him to feel happier and healthier. An avid poet, Carl has described how he feels about Zeal, and has captured our hope for all young people who walk through our doors: “Zeal means more to me than words can describe. The amount of compassion in the hearts of the staff, and the commitment they put into all of us is unmatched by anything else. Zeal is a safe place, a supportive place, and above all, a place to call home when I had nothing else.”

Catholic Care’s funding allows us to continue this work in the community.

Lehi Duncan, Zeal Hamilton Manager
1 March 2018