Combating Homelessness, Creating Opportunities, Promoting Change

BHT Highlights: November 2015

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30Nov

BHT prides itself on the quality and diversity of its services, producing more news stories than we can usually fit on our website. Read on for a round-up of BHT news highlights throughout November:

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BHT Chief Executive Andy Winter won the Outstanding Contribution to Sussex Award in the Argus Achievement Awards.

Andy was also named by the Media Guardian as one of the top 30 charity chief executives in social media in the UK. 27 of the 30 chief executives are from national or international charities.

Delivering Excellence

The BHT Staff Conference took place with the theme ‘Delivering Excellence‘.

There were various presentations titled ‘Soapbox Sevens‘ which were described as very informative and inspiring, leaving BHT staff wanting to know more.

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Fundraising and Marketing

Volunteers, including tin-collection01_W300BHT Board members, staff, supporters and local councillors shook buckets and tins in support of the First Base Christmas Appeal, raising over £617. The next Christmas Collection is in Hove on 12 December.

BHT Staff attended a fundraising event at Sussex University where BHT had a stand, raising over £359 from those wearing Christmas jumpers and from selling cake.

Daniel O’Connell, BHT’s Head of HR and Learning & Development gave a presentation on Employment in the Third Sector to the Business Management and Economic students at the event.

BHT Projects
Accommodation for Work

BHT’s Move On and Accommodation for Work projects held a Housing Workshop for 23 clients and several staff in the drop-in at head office. BHT clients reported feeling more informed about their housing options.

Addiction Services

Staff from the project attended the launch of this year’s Alcohol Awareness Week run by Pavilions Partnership. Clients gave a spoken word poetry performance as part of a presentation by the Cascade Creative Writing Group

Archway Project

The Care Quality Commission completed its unannounced inspections of the Archway Project. The inspections went very well with just a few minor areas for improvement.

Great for the service – a real morale booster for the team, and BHT’s first inspection under the CQC new regime.

Sharon Munnings, BHT Senior Manager, Mental Health

Move-on Sessions will run fortnightly until March 2016, and include subjects such as ‘Maintaining your Tenancy’, ‘Managing your Mental Health’, ‘Menu Planning and Budgeting for Food’, along with IT, education and training.

The Project had its monthly Client Involvement Steering Group. A Client has organised two focus groups to help other clients fill in the Client Involvement Snapshot Survey.

Brighton Advice Centre

The Legal Aid Agency has confirmed that the contracts that BHT holds to provide housing and immigration advice will be extended until 2018.

high_sheriff_W300The High Sheriff of East Sussex, Juliet Smith, visited BHT’s Brighton Advice Centre in Queens Road accompanied by Board member Hugh Burnett, a former High Sheriff himself.

BHT staff attended the Advice Services Network Meeting and a presentation by consultant Vicky Ling who undertook an evaluation of their webcam pilot.

The report was glowing in praise for the project and believes it is a blueprint for other services to use in the future.

Click here to read more about this innovative project on Andy Winter’s blog

The Legal Education Foundation has awarded BHT Advice a grant of £10,000 towards the development of the Digital Advice Webcam Services, for those who are excluded legal advice provision.

A musical fundraising evening took place at the Calvary Church in Viaduct Road, raising over £285 towards the work of BHT’s Immigration Legal Service.

Client Involvement

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Digital Skills courses are being run for BHT clients and tenants, who will have the opportunity to gain a City & Guilds qualification on Internet Basics.

BHT’s new Tenant and Client Involvement Coordinator has been appointed, and will be starting in the New Year.

Juliet O’Brien previously worked as the Engagement Coordinator for Diabetes UK.

After completing completing a two day course, Shirley Campbell is now BHT’s Sussex Armed Forces Housing Champion. She can help anyone who has served in the Armed Forces with housing, benefits and debt, as well as signposting people to other forces charities.

Eastbourne Advice Centre

BHT’s Eastbourne Advice Centre has secured three years of funding from Eastbourne Borough Council for the prevention of homelessness within the town.

First Base Day Centre

BHT’s First Base Day Centre received a donation of £3,000 from two local philanthropists to pay for fresh milk for clients’ drinks and breakfasts over the next year.

The Centre has been chosen as one of the five selected charities that the People’s Republic of Brighton and Hove will be supporting over the next few months.

dine-logoRGB_W220Dine, First Base’s Social Enterprise Catering Company passed the first selection process for funding from the Rank Foundation, and has been invited to apply for core costs to expand its business.

Sara Peskett, BHT Heritage Project Officer led a workshop at the Honeycroft Centre Holiday Club on homelessness to 13 five to ten-year-olds. After the workshop children delivered chocolate chip cookies that they had baked to the homeless project, Antifreeze.

Fulfilling Lives

The Fulfilling Lives team got together in Hastings to participate in a workshop to create a ‘Theory of Change’, a visual representation of how the Fulfilling Lives team will reach their project outcomes.

Hastings Young People’s Service (HYPS

Simon Treen, Operational Manager of HYPS was interviewed by the Home Office as part of a peer review of partnership working to tackle the issues of gangs and youth violence in Hastings.

HYPS’s Client Champion, Cherry, attended the ‘Big Take Over‘ at County Hall in Lewes, which focussed on cuts being made to East Sussex services. Young people are to be consulted and have their say on services in the county.

Housing Services

Richardson's Yard 02Drop-ins took place at head office for Affinity Sutton residents from 158 properties, who will become BHT Tenants next year.

BHT’s Housing Services held a Tenant Involvement event at Richardson’s Yard, with tenants discussing queries and volunteering to become Tenant Reps for the service.

Phase One

BHT’s Phase One project participated in a drumming session at Chailey Heritage School. Two clients from Phase One also played the guitar and sang songs to children and staff.

Clients from Phase One visited Roots to Growth Farm, where two clients volunteer. One client has started researching and planning the building of a wood fired pizza oven after a request from the farm manager.

Route One

route_one_forest_W300Clients and staff from BHT’s Route One project completed a five hour walk through the Sussex countryside led by Mik Jennison, a client at the project.

Route One held its second monthly Poetry and Creative Writing group. Attendees wrote a little piece for after the session, inspired by a question ‘What brings you comfort at this time of year?

Shore House

shore-house-grafitti_W300Shore House clients, Occupational Therapy students and an Intern worked on a graffiti project for their garden.

A bead-making group ran, and was well-attended, with members of the group producing various items of jewellery including earrings.

Shore House ran various workshops to mark Alcohol Awareness Week. Activities included looking at the different community services that provide support in the area.

Whitehawk Inn

BHT’s Whitehawk Inn project held the annual Whitehawk Wordsmiths’ Anthology of Poetry and Prose event, raising around £200 to support learners in providing bursaries to go towards childcare costs or a reduction in course costs.

Organised by volunteers, the creative writers have found support in the Whitehawk Inn, and publish and sell an anthology of their work throughout the year.

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