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Posted18.03.20

How we are helping homeless people in our services during the pandemic

Evolve Housing + Support is running an emergency appeal for homeless people during the Coronavirus. Learn more here

We are following all guidelines issued by the government about Coronavirus to protect the homeless people in our services and our staff.

As we support some of the most vulnerable people in society, our work is regarded as one of the emergency services. Our supported accommodation will therefore remain open, but it may be that we alter the way we provide support as we face a potential reduction in staff. We will be flexible in redeploying staff to ensure sufficient cover, whilst keeping them safe and reducing unnecessary travel.

Our business continuity plan maps out details of how we will work dependent on the different levels of the outbreak. Our Leadership Team are meeting every 2 days to continually review where we stand relating to updated Government guidance, and how we will operate under it.

In line with and in addition to the measures issued by the government;

  • Increased cleaning throughout the services
  • No contact between staff or service users
  • Hand-washing for 20 seconds every 2 hours
  • Letters and texts sent to service users giving advice
  • Posters across all services giving advice
  • No shared use of cutlery and crockery
  • Restricting use of communal space
  • Staff monitoring service users health
  • Supporting service users who have to self-isolate
  • Checking if service users have access to online shopping

 


Evolve has also created a new document for its service users to manage their health, both mentally and physically through extended periods of self-isolation and quarantine:

 


Our support work is integral to helping the homeless people in our services. We are adapting ways of working as best we can, whilst prioritising the immediate health of beneficiaries and staff.

How we are managing our support work;

  • Key work sessions being held over the telephone
  • Work and Learning support being offered online
  • Counselling sessions are being offered over the telephone
  • Small group AA and Turning Point meetings still being held at this point, although under review

Our accommodation is mostly formed of quality, self-contained rooms. It is therefore more manageable for us to manage any spread of the virus where people have to self-isolate.

How we are supporting homeless people who have to self-isolate;

  • Supporting them to shop online
  • Bringing food and supplies from reception to outside their door
  • Calling them throughout the day so they have someone to talk to

We are adapting our ways of working as best as possible and doing all we can to continue supporting the people in our accommodation.

We are calling on the community to support us through these times by donating funds to support the financial gap we face in covering temporary staff costs and sick pay.

We are also requesting food, tech and hygiene donations to support those who are in self-isolation.

As we face an increase in staff shortage and sick pay, we are calling on the government to issue emergency funding.  We run to tight budgets and do not have additional funds to cover such costs.

There has already been a great show of support from the community. A local restaurant delivered food to one of our services and some of our corporate supporters have set up a group to support us.

Thank you all for thinking of our vulnerable service users at this time when we are all facing challenges. Your support is vital and whole-heartedly appreciated.

Please do all take care and continue following guidelines to prevent the spread of this virus.

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