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4 December, 2023
News Story

How community partnerships help solve homelessness

David is the Community Partnerships Manager at Your Place. Here he discusses the role his team play in solving an individual’s homelessness, which is so much more than just a roof over their head.

“We have different teams at Your Place, and Community Partnerships is one that works with residents and their key workers to identify their needs and help them rebuild their confidence. At the same time, we also work closely with local organisations who can help our residents have active and inclusive roles in the community. We receive referrals from key workers so we know the particular things that residents need help with in order to move forward. When you think of moving on from homelessness, of course the first things that come to mind will be housing and finances, but softer skills and engaging in social activity are also really important to make positive changes.

“Understandably, for some people, trauma they have experienced will get in the way of making the progress that they may want and need, and working at a pace that the resident feels comfortable with is essential. Sometimes, getting a job might not be the first priority if someone is experiencing another barrier, such as mental health. If a resident isn’t ready to go out and engage with services and organisations in the community, we set up visits to Your Place from the right services.

“For others, they might be ready to get back into employment straight away, in which case my team will reach out to companies that we have a working relationship with as well as sourcing new employers to add to our partner list. These companies must have shared and aligned values to ours, as there is a level of trust with our residents that these workplaces are suitable. A big part of our role is to do the due diligence on employers before we recommend residents go to work there. This is a critical element of the employment support process as often our residents will need time and appropriate support to develop into a role and thrive.

“The Big Give Christmas Challenge will help to fund this work with residents, which is so important to help support people towards independence. We provide end-to-end employment support and engage with residents at an early stage of their time with us, so we know early on whether they are ready and looking for work, or if they need some support before that stage, which we also help with. The initial Training Needs Assessment (TNA) helps identify how the individual wants to move forward, which is important. We do things at their pace, and each person will progress through different pathways.

“Employability sessions, where residents develop soft skills, are curated and delivered our team, but are led by and centred around the residents. Ultimately, the support that they need is the support that will be delivered. These sessions are ongoing and develop essential confidence and steps towards achieving their goals, whatever they might be.

“There are often multiple challenges for our residents throughout their journey to achieving sustained employment and it is a primary function of the Community Partnerships teams person-centred approach to provide them with the necessary tools and a secure platform to ultimately succeed.”

All donations made via the Big Give Christmas Challenge before 12noon 5th December will be doubled, at no extra cost to you! Click here to make your donation to support this area of our work.
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