A HOMELESS Polish man whose life fell apart when his marriage ended, managed to turn his life around after meeting a fellow countryman at a Swindon hostel.

Lucasz Maselik, 43, has gone from strength-to-strength since friendship blossomed with Rafal Rozmus at Sanctuary Supported Living’s Culvery Court, a homelessness service based on Harding Street.

Shortly after he arrived in England in 2014 Lucasz went through tough times following his marriage breakdown and job loss.

He turned to alcohol for comfort and was then plunged into depression before ending up without a roof over his head and becoming a rough sleeper on the streets of Swindon.

But his life began to change after he was referred to Culvery Court and offered a place to stay along with help to get back on his feet.

Lucasz said: “I cried when I heard the news. I just couldn’t believe that someone was willing to give me a chance.

“It’s been so amazing, in just a few short weeks I’ve found a place to call home and I’ve made a lifelong friend from my own country.”

SSL provides personalised care and support for people in need, such as homeless or people with mental health problems.

On his first days at the hostel Lucasz struggled to communicate with the staff because of his poor level of English.

But he overcame this challenge when Rafal, who has been there for a year, offered to help translate documents and other information for him.

The blossoming friendship benefitted both men. Rafal, who was previously an introvert is now spending time, shopping, cooking and playing table tennis with Lukasz. The pair even cooked a traditional Polish meal for their fellow residents.

Tina Milburn, the local service manager said: “It’s been a pleasure to watch Rafal and Lucasz spend time together. They are a real inspiration to each other.

“It’s especially rewarding given that we have only been delivering the care and support provision at Culvery Court for the last four months.

“Lucasz looks much better than when he arrived. He stopped drinking and we referred him to the doctor. He is smiling, he looks better, his skin looks better, and he goes out with other friends who are also from Poland. He got a purpose now.

She added: “We are trying to get him to Swindon college to undertake an English course. He can get this for free and is now waiting to get housing benefits.

“We want him to be more independent, that’s why we assist people like Lucasz.”