Lifeline Harrogate – People living better lives by being given a place to live
The number of people sleeping rough in England has increased by 73% over the last three years and is predicted to rise by 76% in the next decade. Harrogate is of course not immune to this national trend.
Hostels do an amazing job either getting people off the streets or ensuring that they don’t have to sleep on the streets. People though need a home in order to start to begin re-building their lives and that is where we have found Lifeline has been able to meet a real need.
The step changes from homelessness to a hostel to a flat (assuming that is available) is too much for many people and therefore Lifeline is able to stand in the gap and provide fully independent living but with floating support. Some of the many things Lifeline is able to do are listed as follows;
- Prevent isolation
- Encourage social interaction
- A residential address helps massively with finding work
- Introduce the resident to other agencies who can help
- Take them to medical appointments and remind them about appointments
- Help them with their benefit applications (a major issue with Universal Credit)
- Create a culture that encourages the residents to engage in at least 10 hours per week of meaningful activity such as volunteering, training, education or employment
- Provide reassuring support on a day to day week to week basis
- Keep people safe
- Help to restore family and personal relationships
Each person is unique and has different needs and has reasons for homelessness that are different . So we will always personalise everything and create an individual support plan for each person.
Our goal is to create independence whilst recognising that isolation can be an issue and hence we are always trying to create a support network for our residents whilst they are with Lifeline so that when they leave Lifeline they will be able to make a successful transition to independence.
With the Homeless Reduction Act becoming operational in April 2018 we feel that this will create a more focussed response to homelessness and that therefore supported living will become more of a desired outcome. We feel we have the results to put Lifeline in a positive place for these new challenges. We remain committed to purchase more houses down the line and also we are looking very closely at the merits of doing an all female house.
Carl Good March 2018