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

Mo

Shore House provides accommodation and support for people with multiple and complex needs. That means they will have a combination of alcohol and drug addictions, mental health problems, and other chaotic or destructive behaviours. Often they will have experienced repeated trauma throughout their lives.

Mo moved to Shore House after being discharged from Mill View Hospital. Before her hospital admission she had been evicted from three services for violence, aggression, and causing extensive damage to her room.

She had a history of being street homeless and she displayed various anti-social behaviours including urinating and defecating in gardens, damaging cars, shouting verbal abuse, and making allegations of assault and rape when attempts were made to remove her from private property.

Becs

Helping someone off the streets is not as simple as just providing a roof over their head. Becs was referred to our 52 bed hostel, Phase One, in April 2013 having lost her accommodation. She had previously had her own independent tenancies but these had broken down due to rent arrears which had led to her entering a negative cycle and her engagement with support services had decreased.

Her physical health was poor due to her long-term alcohol and drug addiction which had also impacted her psychological well-being as she had been struggling with establishing positive sleep patterns causing her to feel depressed.

When she came to Phase One she wanted to work towards again getting her own independent accommodation and to re-establish contact with her son.

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

photo of homeless man

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

Simon

Simon moved into the Archway Project in June 2018, following a 10 year stay at another registered care home.

Before Simon moved to Archway he had lived in a registered care home for 10 years and his referral paperwork suggested someone who had become institutionalised; he did not socialise with other residents, had minimal interaction with staff, ate all of his dinners in his room, and relied on staff to cook for him and do his laundry.

Since moving to Archway Simon has shown a marked change. He is now sitting down to dinner with other residents, joining in with walks, games of croquet, trips to cafés and craft activities.

Ross

After going through the difficult journey of recovering from addiction and sleeping rough, being in secure employment can offer purpose to someone’s life. This is the story of Ross, who turned their life around with the help of our Intern Programme, and our Housing Services. “On 31st October 2014, I went into Mill View Hospital Promenade Ward for an alcohol and diazepam detox. Up until my hospital admission, I was street homeless, rough sleeping and begging for change on the streets of Brighton, Hove and Sussex. I was just over 8 stone in weight and had lost most of my … Read more

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

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

Zehra

Maintaining employment whilst being insecurely housed is difficult and can have a negative impact on someone’s mental wellbeing. Our Accommodation for Work project was set up to help people like Zehra, who came to us whilst in emergency accommodation. Zehra was forced to leave her family home due to her mother’s health issues and difficult dynamics in their relationship. Facing homelessness, she was placed into emergency accommodation before coming to the Accommodation for Work’s temporary shared accommodation. Whilst this was happening, she was still working part-time as a support worker in a mental health hospital. Zehra found the job difficult … Read more

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.

Martha

Martha was referred to Shore House following an intentional overdose of prescription medication that nearly proved fatal, and which resulted in a hospital admission.

As Martha was too physically unwell to travel, the Shore House manager offered to conduct the initial assessment with her in hospital. Martha was offered a self-contained flat within Shore House and was subsequently discharged from hospital to Shore House with integrated support from an Occupational Therapist.

Alice

When a person has experienced many setbacks in life, it can be difficult to find a positive way forward. Prior to coming to Route One, our mental health supported accommodation, Alice was finding it hard to cope with mental and physical health needs, a breakdown of familial relationships and substance use issues. We helped Alice gain the support she needed to see a brighter future away from sofa surfing and into independent accommodation. This is her story. When Alice was referred to Route One, she had complex needs inclusive of emotionally unstable personality disorder, and challenges with depression and intrusive … Read more

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