Church Homeless Trust

Rebuilding broken lives

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Time to celebrate

Date posted: 23 Jun 2014

Church Housing Trust takes a look at some of the many small events held at schemes that make a big difference to homeless people’s lives.

Many hostels take the opportunity to use our funding for group activities, barbeques and other get-togethers throughout the year. These are vital in bringing the residents of each scheme closer together and providing a welcome break from more intensive therapies. A great example is the Teenage Parents’ Project (TPP) in Wakefield, which recently hosted a May Day party for the mothers and babies at the scheme; as good a reason as any to celebrate!

Beverley Spencer, a support worker at the TPP, described their Bank Holiday get-together:

“At the party on May Day the weather was fine and the garden was looking good, as we had just had the grass cut and some new plants put in. We asked for funding from Church Housing Trust for some small garden toys for the babies and toddlers at scheme.

“The residents enjoyed an al fresco lunch and played charades while the children helped staff with planting and tending to the garden.

“The day was enjoyed by all; this kind of time together boosts a client’s self-esteem, as they can catch up with friends old and new and their children have a chance to play together.”

An issue many housing schemes struggle with is getting their residents to socialise. People that have lived on the streets may find it very difficult to adjust to a scheme; if they have become one of the group known as entrenched homeless, they may simply be unused to living indoors. Some may have suffered violence while on the streets or be running from it in their former lives. Others may have drug, alcohol or mental health issues. All of these factors can make it a struggle to interact with other human beings.

A scheme will offer a plethora of support in the form of counselling or therapies, but a huge impact can be made by encouraging friendly, open interaction between those living there. Activities like these encourage self-confidence, especially in the case of children and young adults.

Any pretext to get residents out of their rooms and talking to each other will help aid their rehabilitation, open them up to communicating with others and hopefully show them that they are in a safe place with sympathetic people around them.

To fund more of these much-needed activities, please consider a donation.

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