They say stuff happens for a reason. And then there is just stuff that happens.

A lot of stuff has happened to Karen Walker over the years and, until recently, most of it has been on the minus side of life’s ledger. Think chemotherapy, developing diabetes, and not long ago she was diagnosed with Lupus, an autoimmune disease in which the body’s immune system mistakenly attacks healthy tissue in many parts of the body.

But two months ago, the 54-year-old placed a giant tick on the positive side of her ledger when she moved into one of our units in St Albans where she is “close to the shops”.

“I’m still pinching myself that this is my home,” Karen said. “I didn’t believe it until the keys were in my hand.”

“It’s like this place was meant to be. All my furniture fits like a glove,” she said.  “What’s even better is that there’s a bath. I love a good soak.”

After many years struggling in the private rental market and the disappointment of three unsuccessful attempts to access co-op housing, Karen said the transition to her two bedroom apartment was “incredibly smooth and stress free”.

“Elaine (Tenancy and Property Manager) was so professional, quick and polite. If she said she’d do something, she did it.”

Now settled and making friends with her neighbours, the former Human Services worker is keeping busy undertaking diploma studies in mental health, drug and alcohol treatments, and community services. On the day we called, Karen was installing a fish tank, “Can’t wait to get the tank up and running, then it will really feel like home.”