Earlier this year we saw an opportunity to deliver a homeless outreach service in Perthshire and we jumped at the chance to take it! We spent many hours planning and preparing with the intent of doing the best job we can for those who need us most. One of the things we wanted to do was hold a roadshow in Perth… so we did! At the end of September, our CEO and Director of Services went to Dunkeld, Birnam, Aberfeldy, and Pitlochry to meet all of the lovely Perthshire people and discuss what we plan on doing for those experiencing homelessness in their area. The roadshow had a great turnout and so many people were excited to see Simon Community Scotland start work in the Perthshire area.
We opened our new Perthshire service on Monday 14th October! Our amazing team there will be out and about, reaching far and wide to provide support to anyone experiencing homelessness (being in unsafe, unsuitable, and/or insecure accommodation) in the Perthshire area. Our team are dedicated, passionate and ambitious and will always do what they can to #MakeItRight.
We are working in partnership with Perth and Kinross Council to deliver a housing support service that responds quickly to help the people we support to secure a safe place to live. Our team of ten highly skilled staff will be out in the communities making connections, partnerships and working with individuals to find solutions.
Our new service aims to support people to retain or move into a safe tenancy. For many, it will be the very first time they have been given a tenancy and so through person-centred support plans we will equip people with the skills required to facilitate the transition and turn their house into a home. We will support people to access the benefits they are entitled to, instil confidence in someone to access their community resources and just about anything else that the individual needs. We will typically support someone for a period of 6 to 9 months before they move on to newer and brighter pastures! #MakeItHappen
Our Director of Services, Hugh, said:
‘It’s easy to walk through some of Perthshires towns and not consider homelessness as something relevant to that community. Sadly, it couldn’t be further from the truth. Whilst there is little – if any – rough sleeping, there are people living in unsuitable or unsafe accommodation. We hear of people in caravans with no running water, people experiencing significant mental health problems caused by neighbour issues they can’t complain about, people working long hours for low wages – still unable to afford the rents, AirB&B and holiday cottages pushing rental properties out the community and people living in poor conditions but unable to complain because they feel there is no other option. These are issues that go unseen and unnoticed, people get on with it but it has a huge impact on their quality of life, relationships, income, physical health and even mental health… we want to help change that’.
At Simon Community Scotland we strongly believe in supporting people to find solutions to the issues they face and to move forward towards a safe home and stable life. For many, being homeless is about living with continual insecurity and little sense of value. It is really important to us that people experience something different with us. We work hard to provide safe, welcoming places where people have time to think, to re-evaluate, to make choices and not be judged or punished. We want everyone to be able to reach their own potential in their own home, finding solutions that work for them.
Keep up-to-date with Simon Community Scotland by following us on social media @SimonCommScot or keep clicking through our website to find out more about us!