Nova’s Story


Nova, 23, is a Twitch-streamer, growing a gaming community in which people from all over the world exchange their feelings and experiences.

“It’s a lot to take in, I feel for people but I like to help people with anything that they need. If I can make one person happy that means a lot to me.

Springboard got me to this point. They helped me break the barrier of talking to people. If it wasn’t for SPEAR getting me to talk to people my age, I wouldn’t be able to do any of this.”

It took Nova a long-time to be able to socialize or simply talk to people she didn’t know. Nova became homeless at just 18 years old, she slept on friend’s floors for a couple of years, before having no choice but to sleep on the streets for a couple of months.

“Being street homeless was very scary. I got mugged for my phone once. It was very, very scary- I couldn’t defend myself.”

With no one to turn to, she was street homeless for a couple of months before being referred to Streetlink who contacted our Outreach Teams.

Our Outreach Teams provided her with vital goods such as hats, gloves, and food while securing her temporary accommodation. Around Christmas, SWEP was activated and she was urgently provided a room in a house of multiple occupancies where she stayed for a couple of years.

“I can’t tell you how happy I was. When I shut the door, I sat on the bed and felt so happy, so relieved that I had a roof over my head, a key to my own door.”

As a young person experiencing homelessness, Nova was referred to Springboard, our young people’s project, who supported her with financial advice and encouraged her to build her social skills. When she was younger, Nova suffered with stuttering and was bullied by other children which made her shy and found talking to others difficult.

“Springboard gave me something to look forward to every week. About four years ago, I wouldn’t speak to anyone. I now have a whole community focused mental health awareness. People talk to me about how they feel and she listens to them while playing. It’s a safe place for people and it’s amazing to get messages from people telling me ‘you’ve helped me.”

Nova now hopes to be a full-time Twitch-streamer.

Other stories...

Igor’s story

Our Outreach team have been supporting Igor, aged 33, who was found sleeping rough in Richmond.

Daniella’s story

At only 22, Daniella was approached by our Outreach team while sleeping rough. She had been sofa surfing during her last year at university, where she studied English literature. After joining SPEAR’s peer mentoring programme, the Springboard project supported Daniella to take a Level 3 Education and Training course. She now works for a charity as a career specialist to support young people who have been through the care system to receive training and employment and rents her own flat.

Ashley’s story

Ashley first experienced homelessness at the young age of 16 due to a family breakdown before finding work with accommodation. Just over 18, he lost his job and was pushed into homelessness again. He spent a few months sofa surfing before having to sleep rough.

Andy’s story

Andy experienced homelessness when, under complex circumstances, he could not access his home or tools. After losing everything and several months on the streets, Andy’s mental health worsened. After coming into contact with SPEAR, Andy was assigned a case worker who supported him to find accommodation and get involved with the local community.