The needs within homeless services change over time and, wherever possible, so must our response to these needs. As a result we have recently introduced the new role of Tenancy Sustainment Worker at our Homeless Support Service (HSS).
You may be forgiven for thinking that when someone finally gains accommodation this is the ‘end-of-the-story’, but for many people gaining accommodation can bring a whole host of other issues, and this can be particularly true where someone has been rough sleeping for a considerable amount of time.
You can go from being part of a supportive community, where you know the etiquette, to a lonely and unsupported environment where you are not sure what is expected of you, and add to that cooking, running a home, paying bills, dealing with utilities, managing money and making appointments and that can be a whole lot of pressure all at once.
Of course not all those coming through our service will need this help, but for those that do we believe that, with a little interim support, we can help our clients through this transition period enabling them to sustain their new tenancies and ultimately take back control of their lives.
Our Tenancy Sustainment Worker will initially be working with individuals that were housed during our Winter Shelter and going forward will also work with our HSS clients most at risk of losing their accommodation.