Monday, 6 February 2012

(November 2010) Guest blog: Steve Hedley, CEO Trinity Homeless Projects

Archived (from November 2010):

Steve will be speaking at the next Windsor Labour meeting on the 18th of November. We invited him to write a guest blog for our site.

HOMENo one ever came to us saying they want their own home. ‘Place’ is what people say, “I want my own place”.

To talk about ‘being somewhere’ rather than ‘having something’ leaves less to be disappointed about, less to get worked up about, less to hope for. The feelings of home may best be captured when you want to go there. The instant justifications provide a list of the very things we all wish for; a place to call my own, full of my things, warm, safe, familiar, a place to close the door on the rest of the world and be myself, put my feet up, follow my rules. Typically the opposite is true if you are homeless; no where to go, owning nothing, unsafe and unfamiliar, vulnerable to the world, unable to relax, not knowing the rules. Having a place is a big step towards having a home. You make a place a home by caring for it, by being stable, things people suffering the effects of homelessness struggle with. People are fearful when they first come to us. We call ourselves a hostel, which either conjures up images of a Dickensian workhouse, or a doss house that’s more dangerous than sleeping on the streets. What people find instead are small, warm houses run by friendly, welcoming staff. A space where you can relax and recover and spend as much time as you need to address the reasons that have caused you to become homeless. Getting a place to make a home is difficult enough for people not on the property ladder, even more difficult if you qualify for Social Housing and nearly impossible if you don’t. Yet getting a place to make a home requires first finding that place inside you that wants a home, otherwise getting a place will often mean losing it again as you don’t have the desire or the skills to turn that place into your home. The way we work at Trinity is; People come to us wanting a place and they leave able to make a home.

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