A homeless man in Hull has shared his story of how being dumped led to sleeping rough and spiralling into drug and alcohol addiction.

Although Adam Pregowski still has no fixed address, he no longer sleeps on the streets and he reported making significant strides in putting his addictions behind him.

Read more: People who help Hull's homeless every day are all saying the same thing

He was one of scores of people using the services of Reaching Out To The Homeless soup kitchen on Friday night in the barely lit grounds of St Mary's, Lowgate.

Adam, a Polish national, came to Hull five years ago from the city of Wrocław.

Adam in 2019 - he began taking Spice after ending up sleeping rough. He said he had now been clean of drugs and alcohol for some time
Adam in 2019 - he began taking Spice after ending up sleeping rough. He said he had now been clean of drugs and alcohol for some time

Things fell apart for him after a self-described "mental health breakdown" after the death of his mother and a break-up with a long-term girlfriend led to his becoming homeless.

He became a rough sleeper in 2018 and turned to alcohol and drugs, including Spice, at this difficult point in his life.

In 2019, he spoke to Hull Live as he marked 18 months since first receiving support to overcome his drug addiction from ReNew.

Two-and-a-half years on, Adam claimed to have been clean for some time of both drugs and alcohol.

He conceded though that staying free of alcohol was still a daily challenge, describing himself as being a "champion" at being addicted to alcohol.

But he was determined to continue his recovery, reflecting that the next time he might allow himself a drink would be his next birthday, in September 2022.

He credited going to AA meetings as helping him.

His immediate problem now was a lack of valid ID, partly due to an expired passport, and the barriers to getting work produced by that and linked to it, his current visa status.

He said he had applied for Universal Credit in recent months, in order to be able to move into a hostel or other accommodation, but "had no right because of the things I didn't have".

As well as getting his ID situation sorted, a priority for Adam was to get permanent accommodation.

"I want to work," he added, and revealed that his ideal job would be in manual labour as a spray painter and decorator.

He mentioned past experience as a "street artist" as to why this appealed.

Adam was far from only soup kitchen attendee at Reaching Out To The Homeless's kitchen Friday night, with tens of others being fed or enjoying time indoors.

Sandy Smith, of local charity Hull Harp, said of the project involves several soup kitchens working together: "The soup kitchens are actually talking to each other, which hasn't happened in a long time.

"Six of the seven in Hull support getting an indoor space and collaborating, sharing info and resources. They want to do it still as their own groups, but under one roof."

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