Homelessness in the newsPosted by Rachel Holliday Mon, February 17, 2014 15:41:21
Ive been following with great interest the story of Christian Nock who set off walking anti clockwise around Britain after finding himself homeless in 2012. He has slept "rough" every night and is heading down towards Cumbria soon! Please check out his page, he blogs about every day of his journey, the highs and the lows and the most wonderful part, the kindness of fellow humans he has met along the way.
Good luck in your quest Christian, I do hope to meet you once you make it to Whitehaven.
Homelessness in the newsPosted by Rachel Holliday Sun, August 18, 2013 09:33:24
Time to Change (West Cumbria) Project.
A few months ago I was asked the question "Why don’t they just get off their backsides and get a job?" I said "Would you give him a job?" to which he replied "Would I ek!!!". This got me thinking about looking at the situation we have in West Cumbria, the unemployment, the homeless and the crime and anti-social behaviour levels.
I came up with an idea of a project that would not only provide cheap accommodation, but would focus on employment and work skills. I began to think about all the cuts that had been made and how we have fewer services provided by the council. I thought "Why don’t the people in the project gain the social and work skills they need by providing services to the community?". This project is not about hand-outs, it will not rely on large amount of "tax payers" money. Many of us live on low incomes in this area and I hear many people feel it is unfair that they "work hard for a living" when others do not. In this project residents will be financially better off working two hours a week than not at all.
Our residents and volunteers will read the electric and gas meters weekly. If these increase, the food budget goes down and vice versa. These are real life budgeting skills and times are hard. Time to Change is about looking at our society locally and changing it for the better. I would rather see unemployed gaining work skills and experience by working voluntary on community projects than not at all. Quite honestly, they would too. Wouldn’t you?
I want to point out that only a minority of referrals will be from prison. The majority will be from the homeless departments at Copeland and Allerdale. Here is a quote and something to think about in relation to people who leave prison.
"When someone leaves prison, we send them back onto the streets with £46 quid in their pockets. Back to the same streets. Back to the same groups of people. Back to the same chaotic life styles. Back to the same habits as before. So why are we surprised when so many commit crime all over again? It costs the economy at least £9.5 billion a year. It blights communities and ruins lives. It’s a national scandal."
Rr Hon Chris Grayling, Secretary of State of Justice
Homelessness in the newsPosted by Rachel Holliday Thu, August 15, 2013 07:53:39
Further to the article printed in the Whitehaven News, I have replied with the following;
"I would like to say the following about the referrals.
Referrals for the Project will mainly be directed from Copeland and Allerdale's Homelessness Department. These will be people who are not entitled to temporary accommodation as they are not deemed "priority need" for whatever reason. Any referral will be police checked and tested for alcohol and substances on arrival and no-one under the influence will be permitted to enter.
Referrals from prison will only be accepted if the resident is deemed to be low risk and has a local connection with a recommendation that our project would be suitable for them. Prisons house prisoners. We provide accommodation for people.
Our Project is short term support to help people who fall on hard times to get back on their feet. Anyone who is in need of long term support will be referred on to the appropriate agency.
Referrals made from the village of Distington would be our priority.
I would ask anyone who has any concerns to contact me as I am happy to meet up to discuss and worries anyone may have.
Please email me or call me and I will make contact."