housing-advice

Our Services

We provide essential services across Brighton & Hove, Eastbourne and Hastings, as well as elsewhere in Sussex.
Over the past 50 years BHT Sussex has developed a diverse menu of services to support people who are homeless, or at risk of homelessness, and people who have complex needs.

Our services include: day centre provision, residential rehabilitation, mental health services, specialist housing and legal advice and work, learning and training initiatives.

Real life stories from BHT Sussex

Scotty

Struggling to find employment despite incredible effort can have a big impact on someone’s health and wellbeing. This was the case with Scotty, who found it difficult to identify a clear path into work after being failed by multiple services. This, coupled with the difficulty of managing a chronic illness, made Scotty feel hopeless. However, after working with BHT Sussex’s Intern Programme, who supported Scotty and his specific needs, Scotty found a way through. This is his story. Feeling hopeless “My life was pretty bleak for many years, and I did not see much of a future ahead of me. … Read more

Nadiya

Our Homes for Ukraine Sustainment Service not only supports Ukrainian refugees and their hosts throughout their placements, but we also support Ukrainians who want to move into the private rented sector. The housing system works completely differently in Ukraine, so many people feel lost and confused. One such person is Nadiya, who we helped find her own home after she felt ready to leave her host. Nadiya is a 40-year-old woman who was living with a host in Sussex after fleeing Ukraine due to the war. Nadiya wanted her children to come and live with her in the UK, as … Read more

Terry

Terry had been long-term homeless and a regular visitor to First Base, our resource centre for rough sleepers in Brighton and Hove. Staff at First Base seized the opportunity presented by the extra support available during the Covid-19 pandemic to encourage Terry to end his rough sleeping for good. First Base has stayed open during the Covid-19 pandemic, but with reduced numbers to keep everybody safe. When the government launched its ‘Everyone In’ initiative, which aimed to get all rough sleepers off the streets, First Base supported Brighton and Hove City Council in its efforts to house rough sleepers, becoming … Read more

Charlie

For most of us we get our identity and status from what we do. BHT Sussex’s Intern Programme was set up to prepare people with a history of homelessness, mental ill health or addictions to make that transition from unemployment into work.

Charlie is a 32 year old white British male. He was born with congenital hand deformities, as well as structural defects which cause lifelong incontinence issues. Charlie was bullied during his school years and began using alcohol and cannabis aged 14. In his early 20’s he found employment as a telesales advisor and an early year’s child practitioner. However, each job didn’t last more than 12 months due to his increasing substance misuse.

Image of young man

Clarrissa

BHT Sussex is part of an alliance of organisations in West Sussex who work together to empower people to improve their mental health and wellbeing called Pathfinder. Pathfinder prides itself on its volunteer Peer Mentors – people who use their lived experiences of mental health challenges to create a supportive environment where their clients can discuss their needs, as well as work towards achieving their goals and aspirations. Clarrissa used to attend Peer Mentor groups as a client, soon becoming a Peer Mentor herself. This is her story: “When I first came to Crawley, I was in a really bad … Read more

Neil

Neil started sleeping rough around two years ago. He was suffering from physical and mental health problems that had been exacerbated by life on the streets.

When he first started coming to First Base, Neil was sleeping under Brighton’s Palace Pier. After sleeping out all night, he looked forward to the chance to get warm and have a shower, put on clean clothes, and have a hot meal. More importantly, he was able to get support and advice to help him find a way out of rough sleeping.

First Base supported Neil to access temporary accommodation but after a serious deterioration in his mental health he was admitted to hospital. While he was in hospital Neil lost his accommodation and, on discharge, he returned to rough sleeping

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Brendon

Over the last couple of years, BHT Sussex’s Addiction Services have noticed an increase in the number of ‘second generation’ addicts. They were children who grew up with one, or both, parents with a severe alcohol and/or drug problem. They often suffered extreme neglect and, in most cases, severe trauma.

The nature of the work that we do at both the Detox Support Project and at the Recovery Project is to help clients to address safely the legacy of their core needs being unmet as children. By doing so, we reduce the chances of those issues becoming triggers for relapse, and they are able to rebuild their lives with the skills and self-belief they were not given as children.

Brendon is a 31-year old alcohol and cocaine addict who recently completed treatment within our Addiction Services.

Khan

Living day to day Last year, I was living a hectic life in Brighton and Eastbourne – to escape that I turned up on my mum’s doorstep, and I wasn’t looking well because I’d been on drugs for a long time. After 6 months Khan’s relationship with his mum and his recovery broke down. He had to leave his mum’s house and he returned to Brighton, where he had nowhere to live. He ended up sleeping rough. Khan was initially placed in emergency temporary accommodation, through the local Street Outreach Service, but he needed more supportive and longer-term housing, and … Read more

Ja

Recovery from mental ill health and moving into independent accommodation can take several years and requires individuals rebuilding many parts of their lives. This is the account of one client from the Route One Project, another of BHT Sussex’s mental health services.

“Around five years ago my journey began in the Route One Project and from the bottom of my heart l am so thankful to you all for picking me up and dusting me off, ready for the new chapter l am in now. l am taking the skills and tools as l call it in to sustaining independent living in so many aspects. I moved into my council property in March 2018 and what we have achieved in the time in the project has been champion. I say we because that is what it has been – a team effort.

“I have Bipolar One and when l came to Route One l was in a state and l had just moved out of a hostel for homeless people. I am not putting down the great work they do but it was making my illness worse, resulting in me being admitted to hospital.

Joshua

Although BHT Sussex began in Brighton, our support services extend to much of East, West and Mid Sussex. In Mid Sussex specifically, we have supported accommodation services which deliver much needed practical help and mental health support to those who find themselves homeless. This is Joshua’s story; a client we supported through one such recovery focussed residential service in Mid Sussex. Joshua is a 33-year-old man who found himself homeless following the breakdown of a relationship. Unfortunately, before coming to us, Joshua had a history of repeat homelessness since he was 18, exemplifying the cycle of homelessness that BHT Sussex … Read more

Paul

Paul is a 49 year-old man who was street homeless in Brighton for four years, suffering from heroin, crack cocaine and alcohol addiction.

He also has multiple physical health difficulties. For a long period of his life, Paul’s closest companion was his dog Lil. As Paul explains in this account below, he was someone who other support services found difficult to reach, but he eventually managed to turn his life around with the support of BHT Sussex’s Addiction Services.

Mike

Last year our advice services in Brighton, Eastbourne and Hastings prevented 817 households from becoming homeless. The impact of this is huge: fewer people on the streets, less demands on local council homelessness services, or moving children away from the schools and their friends. Some people become homeless, not through any fault of their own.

Mike moved into a Housing Association flat in 1980. A few months later he was offered a job as a caretaker at a nearby social club – a job he did for 36 years until he was made redundant. In 1996 he had moved to another flat owned by the housing association, but unbeknown to him, his employers had taken a sub-lease on the flat. In law, his employer had become his landlord. The social club went into liquidation.

Not only did he lose his job, but he wasn’t given any redundancy pay and he was told to leave his home of 20 years.

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