Justlife’s Social Connection project provides support to people moving away from homelessness by helping them to connect with their local communities and build positive social networks and healthy relationships. The project has been running successfully in our Brighton branch and has recently begun operation in Manchester. The social connection project for Manchester consists of two areas:
Our befriending project provides an opportunity for somebody moving away from homelessness to be matched with one of our trained befriending volunteers. They meet once a week in the community and do an activity of their choice, whether that's going for a walk, trying something new or just going for coffee and a chat.
We try to match people according to their shared interests and hobbies, lived experiences or identities.
We offer a range of well-being, creative and skill-based themed activities and workshops throughout the year which are advertised on our quarterly activities and workshop program.
One of our Social connections Coordinators, Colette, consults with people accessing the Social Connection Project to find out what activities and workshops they want us to provide.
I love the community activities and the way it feels like a family outing whenever we go somewhere. The group seems to look out for each other and includes everyone, despite our differences. It gives me such a feeling of belonging.
My volunteer helps me talk about my panic attacks, she listens to me, and is understanding, we talk about ideas which might help me.
Even when individuals find themselves in more secure accommodation, the isolation and social barriers that existed when they were homeless can persist long after they’ve been rehomed.
For those that have been homeless for a long time, adjusting to life in a new home can be challenging, so it’s important to continue supporting them as they acclimatise to a new way of living.
Community-focused, relationship-building projects such as Social Connection decrease the risk of people returning to homelessness by addressing the barriers, they face to living a healthy, stable, and safe lifestyle. Our outcomes include: