Find out more about the Fulfillling Lives project, including details of the overall outcomes, background information, related projects and delivery partners.

Who Are We?

Who Are We?

Fulfilling Lives South East Partnership, operating in Brighton & Hove, Eastbourne and Hastings, started in 2014 and is funded until July 2022 by the National Lottery Community Fund. The Project is one of 12 projects across England funded to (i) provide intensive support for people experiencing multiple disadvantage (ii) involve people with lived experience of multiple disadvantage at all levels (iii) challenge and change systems that negatively affect people facing multiple disadvantage.

The work of the project is informed and directed by people with lived experience – working in staff teams, identifying and researching needs and solutions, being involved at a strategic governance level, and providing support and aspiration to peers.

We are using the learning from the programme to (i) inform providers, policy-makers and commissioners (ii) evidence the need for systems and services that are more welcoming, responsive, flexible and coordinated for those with the most complex needs (iii) promote ways of achieving this.

Project Background

Project Background

The National Lottery Community Fund has made an eight-year (2014-22) investment of up to £112 million in helping people with multiple and complex needs access more joined-up services tailored to their needs.

This Programme funds partnerships of local organisations to work together to improve services for people with multiple and complex needs.

Around 60,000 people in England experience multiple and complex needs, defined here as exhibiting at least two of: homelessness, current/historical offending, problematic substance or alcohol misuse, and mental ill-health. This not only affects their lives but leads to significant social and economic costs associated with a failure to effectively support them.

Our ambition is that the Multiple Needs programme will be threefold:

  1. It will change lives. Individuals experiencing multiple needs will benefit through better established partnerships and networks which best support individuals.
  2. It will change systems. Evidence will be produced showing which elements of the programme are effective. Local and national decision-makers will be encouraged to review and adopt these elements where appropriate.
  3. It will involve beneficiaries. Both positive changes to individuals and system change will be underpinned by the collaborative, genuine and honest involvement of individuals with lived experience.




Other Fulfilling Lives Projects

The Fulfilling Lives programme funds voluntary sector-led partnerships in 12 areas of England that are working to provide more person-centred and co-ordinated services.


They are:

  • Birmingham Changing Futures Together
  • Fulfilling Lives Blackpool
  • Fulfilling Lives South East Partnership (Brighton and Hove, Eastbourne and Hastings)
  • Golden Key (Bristol)
  • FLIC (Fulfilling Lives Islington and Camden)
  • Liverpool Waves of Hope - partnership closed Nov 2019
  • Inspiring Change Manchester
  • Fulfilling Lives Newcastle Gateshead
  • Opportunity Nottingham
  • Fulfilling Lives Lambeth, Southwark and Lewisham
  • Voices (Stoke on Trent)
  • West Yorkshire – Finding Independence (WY-FI)

Local Partners

Local Partners

The Fulfilling Lives South East project is funded by the National Lottery Community Fund and led by BHT who are the overall accountable agency, and is made up of local delivery teams from different partner agencies; currently Equinox and Oasis Project.



Equinox Brighton are a local service providing assertive outreach and engagement, working with the street community to address substance use related issues. They aim to reduce street presence, sustain tenancies and reduce harm while helping people work towards recovery. 

More information can be found on their website

Brighton Oasis Project

Oasis Project is a substance misuse service for women and their children in the heart of Brighton. They exist to support and empower women who have difficulties with drink or drugs to make positive changes in their lives. 

More information can be found on their website

Making Every Adult Matter (MEAM) is a coalition of national charities – Clinks, Homeless Link, Mind and associate member Collective Voice. Together MEAM represents over 1,300 frontline organisations across England.

MEAM supports 39 partnerships across the country to develop effective, coordinated approaches to multiple disadvantage. These include the 12 partnerships that make up the national Fulfilling Lives programme.

MEAM uses shared knowledge and practical experience from their work to influence policy at the national and local level.

For more information, visit their website.

Multiple and Complex Needs

Multiple and Complex Needs

Multiple and complex needs (MCN) are persistent, problematic and interrelated health and social care needs which impact an individual’s life and their ability to function in society.  They are likely to include; repeat street homelessness, mental, psychological and physical health problems, drug and/or alcohol dependency, and offending behaviour. People with MCN are more likely to experience violence and abuse, including domestic violence, live in poverty and have experienced trauma in childhood and throughout their lives.

They have ineffective contact with services, partly due to the fact that most public services are designed to deal with one problem at a time and to support people with single, severe conditions. Lacking effective support from services, people easily end up in a downward spiral of mental ill health, homelessness, drug and alcohol problems and crime.

While relatively small in number, this group imposes disproportionate costs on government and society. Current commissioning processes for services relevant to this group typically do not consider how having simultaneous needs can potentially exclude them from help when they need it the most.

When people with multiple and complex needs try to fit into inappropriate systems, they often experience increased negative outcomes and become more unwell through exclusion. Services themselves can also experience service disruption when they are not designed to cope with the behaviours associated with trauma. In this way those most in need in our community are being overlooked precisely because their needs are so great.

To put the issue into a national context, the Making Every Adult Matter (MEAM) Coalition estimate that 85% of people with the most complex needs experienced some form of trauma in childhood. For women in particular, this frequently continues into adulthood, when they experience domestic abuse and violence. It is also estimated that 58,000 in England people face problems of homelessness, substance misuse and offending in any one year. Within this group, a majority will have experienced mental health problems.

 (Lankelly Chase, Hard Edges: Mapping Severe and Multiple Disadvantage in England, 2015)

Find out more

About the project

Learning and Resources

Systems Change

What is Systems Change?

Systems Change themes

Co-Production and Involvement


What is Co-Production?

Direct Client Work



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