A lot of people have heard about Cosgarne Hall, but that barely scratches the surface of what we do at Harbour Housing.
A large part of our operation as a charity is our outreach work which offers support to people across the county at various stages of the housing process.
We are recognised for our excellence in support models for vulnerable and often chaotic clients, so have been commissioned by the council to provide their support packages for various housing schemes including the Landlord Incentive Scheme, Housing First and the STAR project.
The revolving door of homelessness is a phenomenon that affects many people, with figures from Shelter revealing that over half of homeless families surveyed had already experienced at least one period of homelessness in their lives.
As well as this, eviction from a private tenancy was named as the biggest cause for the rise in homelessness since 2011.
Due to this it is important that people who have moved on from supported accommodation are offered ongoing support to help them retain their tenancy.
Our support workers visit clients in their homes to assist them in a whole range of tasks: attending health appointments, accessing benefits, setting up bank accounts, filling out forms and so much more.
As well as home visits we also have our own Welfare and Assessment Vehicle which is specially equipped for providing outreach support within the community.
The benefit of using this vehicle is that clients with No Fixed Abode or who cannot be assessed in their own homes have a safe and professional environment in which to engage with staff.
Having a mobile office space is especially valuable for conducting joint assessments with partner organisations and allows for more efficient and effective collaboration.
We work closely with many different organisations and our specialist support is supplemented with help and advice from approved voluntary sector agencies with expertise in different areas.
A key part of the moving on process is signposting people to social or befriending services, as isolation often proves to be a hurdle to those recovering from homelessness.
Visits from our staff can also help with this, and planning for these sessions helps to add structure to people’s weeks as well as different goals to achieve before each session.
This ongoing support coupled with the utilisation of partnership between agencies means that no-one is left behind, and the moving-on process from homelessness is much more sustainable.
We are proud of the outreach work that we do, and glad to be part of such a strong community of support organisations in Cornwall.