Wider problems than just homelessness
Crispin Green, Robes Project Advice Worker, tells us:
“As an advice worker planning ‘move on options’ with guests, I often see case work leading into legal matters, financial problems and health considerations.
This year we have seen the introduction of the government welfare reforms and the changes that have a direct impact on many of the guests staying in the shelter.
We are very grateful to the Vicar’s Relief Fund who made grants to meet the needs of a significant number of individual guests in crisis.”
Getting people back into homes
“In the run up to Christmas we were receiving a large volume of referrals, and focused our efforts on helping a number of guests ready to move into private rented accommodation before the Christmas break.
Crisis at Christmas performed a splendid job of looking after all our guests when our shelters were closed and many guests were prompted by this first-hand experience of Crisis to enrol in their New Year courses.”
Making it through the winter
“Eddie Langdown borrowed the South London Mission mini bus and conveyed guests back to Bermondsey when Crisis closed and he arranged for refreshment and relaxation at Bermondsey Central Hall until the night shelter opened in the evening.
In the new year we had the benefit of working with Thamesreach worker, David Zarra. He worked closely with us on continuing referral and resettlement work as well as providing a translation service in Spanish when needed.”
A sad goodbye
“Sadly, as we moved towards Easter, we learned that a former guest had died after a sudden illness.
This was followed by an incident at one of the shelters where an ambulance was called for a guest who developed breathing problems.
His situation became critical and he never recovered in spite of the professional care and treatment he received in intensive care.
Reverend Dr Janet Corlett at Bermondsey Central Hall helped to coordinate plans for, and officiated at, two separate funerals both of which were well attended.”
A time for celebration, and a time to keep going
“Several weeks after the shelter closed in April a large number of guests returned to join in the volunteer celebration event hosted at St Johns Waterloo.
We continue to work with a number of former guests on advice and support around accommodation searching, engagement with health services and dealing with benefit claims.”