“I felt at home in the UK for the very first time.”

In 2014, I was living in a private accommodation with four other students. It was at this time that my room was broken in to and my laptops were taken. It was a terrible experience.

After this burglary, I did not feel safe staying in the same house so I was asking around to see whether I could move out as soon as possible.

I found several accommodations, but they did not seem to be the right options. One evening, I was at iCafe and sharing my problem with Sabine and Graham Stockton. Sabine is from Germany and Graham is British, they live in Manchester with their two daughters.

They said that they were also looking for a tenant for their spare room but someone had already approached them. Their conversation with that person was only interrupted because they had to go to the iCafe that night. After knowing about my plan, they promised to inform me of their decision. I went home and felt quite nervous about it because I really wanted to move in with people whom I know and trust. I was not sure whether they would pick me so I kept praying. Just before 11pm, I received a call from them telling me the good news!

It was a blessing after such misery. The Stockton family welcomed me in, and I felt at home in the UK for the very first time. Together we created lots of fond memories, which I will remember for the rest of my life. I especially cherished our dinner times because we shared almost everything as a family. There was laughter and also disagreements, but that did not stop us from loving and caring for one another.

I lived with the Stocktons for 8 months before getting married. On my wedding day, my mum was very pleased to send me to the church from their lovely house. Even though I have moved out, Nico and I are still invited for dinner regularly! I am truly thankful to Sabine and Graham for their kindness to me as an international student. That has motivated me to open my home to those who are “aliens” in this country.

Before getting married I had stayed in numerous different accommodations, but the best one by far was living with the Stockton family.

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