Gateway resident who was homeless to appear on BBC radio

A woman who was homeless is thrilled to be appearing on a radio station after impressing producers during an interview.

Divine Mukoko is a resident of The Gateway in Coventry which supports homeless people.

The 24-year-old is to appear as a guest on BBC Coventry and Warwickshire in the radio programme called the C Word – which explores various issues relevant to young people.

Divine was offered the opportunity after she impressed producers while speaking about a recent makeover offered to six women at The Gateway to help boost their self-esteem.

Divine spoke about her experience on the radio and is thrilled to have been offered a further opportunity.

She said: “I felt inspired when I was at the radio station and I got the bug. The producers liked the way I responded and said if I was interested I could do the show.

“I can’t explain the feeling of being offered this opportunity. You think ‘did this just happen?’ It was an amazing feeling.”

Divine is originally from Coventry and moved with her family to London, but after some family issues she became homeless and travelled back to Coventry.

She was offered a place at The Gateway in November 2018 just days after leaving London.

She said: “Out of my friends and family I am usually the one that people come to for advice.

“Talking is something that I love to do. I never thought about going into podcasting or journalism and then being there I thought it is something I can do.”

Divine said she feels incredibly lucky to have been offered a place at The Gateway.

She said: “I didn’t expect people at the Gateway to be as nice as they are.

“I have been in this situation before and people generally are not nice – but people at the Gateway helped me and did not judge me and offered a place for me to stay.”

Gail Cooper, Housing Support Manager at The Gateway adds: “What started off as a lovely event in terms of giving residents self-confidence and self-worth has evolved into the next level for Divine.

“It’s an amazing chance for her and she will embrace this fantastic opportunity – she will give it all that she has got!

“She has blossomed from this. She is normally quite shy and reserved in The Gateway up until this event. From our perspective we have seen a different side and she has come out of her shell. It’s fantastic!”

Divine is set to appear on the C Word on BBC Coventry and Warwickshire on Monday, February 11, at 7pm.