A FORMER drug addict has been given a chance to turn his life around after a restaurant owner offered him a job.

Mike Littlewood, who was using Black Mamba and other drugs but has been clean for almost a week, has been given a job as a window cleaner at the newly-opened Pepe’s Piri Piri.

Mr Littlewood, 38, featured in the Worcester News last week after his wife Michelle said she feared his Black Mamba use would kill him.

Speaking of the job offer, Mr Littlewood said: “Things like this, an opportunity for work, build you up again. It gives you something that wasn’t there before. It shows that humanity is still there, and people are willing to help.

“There is lot of work out there, but people look at people like me and don’t give us a chance. They judge us like a book, but without reading it. Instead they skip to the back page but miss all the important bits out.”

Last week we reported that Pepe’s Piri Piri owner Mutaher Shah planned to help vulnerable people in Worcester by providing food free of charge to the homeless.

Regarding Mr Littlewood, Mr Shah said: “People are too quick to judge without knowing any background knowledge or what the people have been through.”

Mr Shah has nicknamed Mr Littlewood ‘Captain America’, calling him a hero and inspiration to others in the same boat as him.

He added: “Mike cleaned my windows earlier this week, and I’ve never seen anyone put so much passion and hard work into a job.

"He has a great determination for someone who has experienced such terrible things. He is living proof that anything is possible.”

Mr Littlewood, of White Ladies Close, Worcester, said: “Homelessness can happen to anyone. There is every kind of person out there on the streets. I’ve met people who once owned a business but have lost everything. Yet people only remember our failures.

“So many people on the streets have said they want to make a life for themselves, but it is making that initial step. The hardest part is finding someone who has faith in you. I am so lucky that Mr Shah has given me this opportunity.

“I hope this experience will encourage more businesses to give people like me a chance. If every business took one homeless person on it would make a huge difference. It will give them a sense of direction and realise they actually have a life to live.”

Pepe’s Piri Piri is going to donate the equipment needed for Mr Littlewood to begin his window cleaning job.

Mr Littlewood is a trained window cleaner but his kit was stolen when all of his belongings were taken while he was living on the streets.

He said: “I have nothing left. I’m building it back up since moving back in with my wife. She has looked after me so well.

"I owe it to her to earn a decent living and provide for us. Especially after I ran away to escape everything – I’ve got a lot of making up to do.”

Mr Littlewood’s wife, Michelle, told the Worcester News: “I’m very proud of Mike for coming off the drugs and getting clean. I am so happy he has got this job. I just hope more businesses will take him on as he is looking for full-time work.”