Injured man's three-month HNZ wait
The wait is finally over for an Auckland man after spending three months sleeping in cars and on couches while he waited for a Housing New Zealand (HNZ) home.
David Hollingshead now has a place to recover after two major surgeries and will no longer have to sleep rough. This weekend he moves into a HNZ two-bedroom unit in Mangere.
''Now I can start healing, and I can look after myself properly. I'm at peace and I've got what I need to sit back and heal."
It hasn't been an easy road for the Manurewa man who spent most of this year in hospital.
In March he underwent surgery for a double colostomy and now wears two bags outside his stomach.
He applied for HNZ support in May before being discharged, knowing that he urgently needed housing once out of hospital. Further surgery followed in June for a massive infection in his hip.
''I knew if I didn't get something sorted I'd get worse and end up back in hospital,'' he said.
Difficulty in seeing an HNZ case manager and delays in hearing back from the organisation added to the stress of recovery, he said.
''Sometimes you sit for an hour on the phone, waiting to talk to someone and you get told to make an appointment. It's hard because I'm sick and I just need to rest. I need those few little things such as hygiene and my own space.''
And now he's got something else to live for - his ex-partner is pregnant.
"It's the only thing that's keeping me going at the moment - having a baby.''
- © Fairfax NZ News
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