Thursday 25 May 2017

Rough sleeper outreach work success

Emma   Lucie

Rough sleepers require support for lots of different reasons, including dealing with mental health issues.

A group of staff and companions from Emmaus Hull & East Riding are working to help those who are living on the streets, through the launch of their Rough Sleeper Support Outreach team.

“I was living at another Emmaus community when I first heard about the Rough Sleeper Service” says one of the companions on this special team.  “Given that I have experienced homelessness and mental health issues I wanted to help out because I could relate to their situations and the struggles rough sleepers face. I transferred to the community and it’s safe to say that I haven’t looked back.”

The Rough Sleeper Support Outreach team has recently had its funding renewed, following a successful first year and is led by two Co-ordinators Emma Hartley and Lucie Carroll. “We were delighted” Emma explains. “Given the high volume of rough sleepers in Hull and East Riding it was vital that we secured the funding.”

“Three members of the team recently attended a Mental Health First Aid training course to ensure that they are best placed to provide support to rough sleepers in the area. “The training course was brilliant, as it taught us the ways to recognise the different stages of people experiencing mental health issues and how we can help. We also learnt how to direct them to the correct services” Lucie adds.

The outreach work is also helping with companion development at the community as a member of the team explains: “I wanted to develop my skills, experience and knowledge in the hope that it will help me become a support worker in the future.”

Since their arrival, Emma and Lucie have made the Outreach Team into a seven-day a week service which shows that more is being done to help rough sleepers in the area. “We’re pleased to see that support for rough sleepers in the area is improving all the time. Moving forward, it would be great to see similar services coming together and helping one another.”