Havering charity saves life of depressed man

15:00 11 June 2014

Emma Bell (left) and Trudy Bettinelli from Family Mosaic

Emma Bell (left) and Trudy Bettinelli from Family Mosaic


A man suffering with depression said that he would have been dead without the help of a charity that helped re-house him.

Michael, in his 50s, said he lived in conditions so poor it was like a “drug den” until Family Mosaic found him a new home in Rise Park and kitted it out with furniture donated by others.

Trudy Bettinelli, 45, is a case worker in Havering for the housing association and also runs the “garage project” that distributes furniture from a Harold Hill garage.

She said: “Michael’s slipped into depression after he lost his wife and he didn’t know how to get out of it. If you could see how he lived before you wouldn’t believe he’s the same chap.”

Mrs Bettinelli helped Michael liaise with the council to get him more suitable social housing.

Michael, who did not want to disclose his surname, said: “Where I was before, it was so run down it was like living in a drug den - I was living badly.

“Now I have a nice flat and they have supplied me with furniture.

“If I hadn’t moved I would’ve been dead by now. I was getting suicidal.

“I’m a lot happier now and I’m just getting my life back together.

“It’s motivated me a lot. I’ve decorated the place and I can now lead a normal life.”

Mrs Bettinelli said that the garage project helps about a dozen people every month.

“Michael’s the kind of person we try to help on a day to day basis,” she said.

“We rely on the people who live in the borough to contact us and donate items and they are give them to people less fortunate.”

She said that she has also seen a rise in working people reaching out for help.

“If you are working it doesn’t mean you are not falling into hardship,” she said.

If you wish to donate items call Family Mosaic on 01708 776 770 or email Mrs Bettinelli on

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