A FRUSTRATED single mum-of-four says her children are forced to sleep in their living room because their bedroom is so damp and mouldy.
Jennifer Shango, a school nurse living in Islington in London, said the two-bedroom, leaky flat has had issues since day one, and her four kids can’t even sleep in their own beds.
The north London flat has been leaking water into the kids bedroom since early December
The leaking water has caused significant damp and mould problems in the two-bed flat
Mum of four, Jennifer, said she doesn’t feel safe with her kids in the damp and mouldy flat
Jennifer, 32, initially moved into Papyrus House with Peabody Housing Association in 2011 and said the lack of space “wasn’t much of an issue” because she only had one child at the time.
But Jennifer now has four children between the ages of 10 and two years old, and one disabled child who requires “a lot of personal care”.
Jennifer said that “things got really bad from about 2018,” as the flat is in a bad state of disrepair but so far Peabody has failed to act.
In early December, stinking water began leaking into their bedroom and is “so continuous” that the laminate floor tiles are starting to peel and the walls are riddled with damp.
The struggling mum told MyLondon: “I don’t feel safe for my kids to be there.”
“I’m fed up, to be honest with you. I don’t know what they consider an emergency, for me this is an emergency. I spent the whole Christmas holiday cleaning up, mopping.”
She described how frustrated she has been as she constantly battles with: “the mould, the really, really bad smell, and the constant leaking of this dirty water.”
“It’s literally coming out in my children’s room.
“I’ve literally had to remove all of their belongings and everything out of there – the property’s already small as it is, I have nowhere else to put this stuff.”
While Jennifer has said it’s been almost impossible in the overcrowded flat, she also claims that Peabody has failed to move her family into appropriate housing, despite numerous requests.
Peabody has said Jennifer’s family have been given “the highest priority” for a house move, saying they are “committed to finding them a suitable, larger home that meets their needs.”
Jennifer said it’s been incredibly difficult on her disabled son: “It’s really impacted him negatively… He hasn’t got no privacy, no dignity whatsoever.”
She said her stress levels have peaked this winter: “All of this is too much for one person to deal with. I’m a single mum, I’m trying to make it out here in life.
“I don’t sit at home on benefits, I work and I try to do my bit and look after my kids and get by with what I have. But I’m so stressed.”
A spokesperson for Peabody housing association said: “We want our residents to feel safe and secure in their homes and we have been working closely with Jennifer to find her a home that is more suitable for her family.
“We have given the family the highest priority for a housing move and are committed to finding them a suitable, larger home that meets their needs.
“We will continue to support them by working with our partners to offer her housing support and advice.
“We are fixing the leak which appears to be coming from a flat upstairs and are visiting Jennifer today (January 14) to re-assess the situation.
“We may be able to offer alternative temporary accommodation while we fix the cause of the leak so this has can be resolved as soon as possible.”
The constant leaks have caused the laminate floors to begin peeling
Jennifer Shango said that her four kids have been forced to sleep in the living room
The flat has reportedly been in a state of disrepair since 2018