I am sitting outside the main entrance to the Westminster underground station by the steps by café Nero, just looking around this Dutch guy appears and sits on the steps opposite me, I just look at him and think to myself this guy does not look well at all he has lost weight, I first met him about 4 or 5 months ago dragging a large suitcase around no wheels on it obviously it eventually wore a hole in the in the bottom of it, so out went the suitcase and I don’t know what it contained but it contents disappeared to, he did not speak English when I tried to talk to him, it was like ok I did not understand a word of that so I used my skills and sign languaged him so we ended up nearly fighting and him shouting at me, after a short while I decided to write down are you hungry do you have any money I could not believe it he could read what I had written, he replied yes and eventually no money, so off I went and got him some food and drink, I asked if he wanted some help and yes he said, so I found someone who spoke a little a little of his language and they let the outreach teams know, they arrived a day or two later I don’t know was said but then they returned again two or three days later with an interpreter, it was a bit odd this meeting he seemed very unhappy about talking to someone from his own country until they explained he was not from his country, it made me smile to think this guy did not want to talk to this other guy because he thought he was the same nationality as himself?, so I don’t know what else happened with them he would not go anywhere but stay around the station, I continued to give him food and drinks for about 2 weeks, I could not keep doing this I just could not keep on supporting him as well, it very was very hard I started struggling myself to live, I was relieved when I see him sit down he never asked anyone but I see a lovely lady give him a bag with a drink and sandwich inside, then a gent gave him a couple of pounds he got up later I see him get a drink of coffee it is nice when you can buy a little of something when you want it something of what you like, so I would like to thank these people for helping him, so here we are around 4 months later this guy sitting opposite me, he got up and started to look inside a couple of rubbish bags I noticed the souls on his trainers were dropping off his feet, then he returned sat down again and it looked like he was chewing his finger nails, I got him a sandwich and a drink when I gave them to him he just looked at me he did not say anything, he soon ate the sandwich, I decided to get him another sandwich this time he looked at me and said thank you, my mind was made up to contact the outreach teams again this time by text messaging, this is the conversation I made with them.
Me text 1…. the Dutch guy at Westminster, his health is worsening and the souls of his shoes are dropping off him, I have given him some food and a drink just a small token to help him a little, is there anything you can do for him before he becomes a victim of death on these streets please. End.
Outreach reply 1…
Hi Tim, we got the cd player yesterday and it is in the office ready for collection, in regards to the Dutch guy we have the mental health team involved as we know he is very unwell, however he has not been seen since the end of June, I will notify the mental health team that he is there today does he talk to you Tim? As he doesn’t really talk to us or make much sense… thank you for letting us know though. End.
So, ok the cd player is something I asked them for was for another guy who the outreach team helped a little while ago he just had a small room he did not have or want a TV just something to play his music on so great they got one for him, my next message back to outreach team was…
Me text 2…. Thank you he is always near to here I think he stays in or around the park by the police station, I will pick up the cd on Monday or Tuesday next week if that’s ok with you, oh and sometime during the day the Dutch guy is always in around Westminster station again thank you.
Me text 3…. Sorry I forgot to say I don’t know what he says I used to write things down for him, he can read English but I see he now has no glasses. End.
There were no more replies from the outreach team, I just hope they do look for this guy and give him help he is incapable of looking after himself and not keeping clean, it is a crying shame to see him or in fact anyone in this situation and I know he and others like him really do need this support before he or they become another death on the streets.