Professionals

Supporting people in their journeys. 

Building the team, that builds the community.

A ramp along a curved wall in the Kiasma Museu, Helsinki, Finland

Eligibility Criteria

Applicants must:

  • Be male and aged 18 or over.
  • Currently homeless with a need for support in order to maintain abstinence based recovery from drug and alcohol dependency and eligible for a housing benefit claim.
  • To be motivated and willing to engage with others also living in abstinence based recoveries within a mutual aid community
  • To be able to pass a drug and alcohol screening test on arrival (Some drugs take a long time to clear the blood and urine systems and we have processes for each of these which can be discussed during the assessment process).
  • To not require psychoactive drugs for a complex mental health condition  (We can sign post to more suitable projects if this is an issue).
  • Have no current or on-going psychiatric diagnosis which would preclude full engagement.
  • Due to the age and nature of our premises, we regret that we are not able to be fully compliant with the requirements of the Disability Discrimination Act 1995 and subsequent legislation. Please check if our accommodation will be able to meet your client’s needs. If we can’t we will be happy to sign post them to organisations that can.

Our Service

Our accommodation is provided specifically for adult men who want to use mutual aid as a means to maintain abstinence based recovery from addiction to drugs and alcohol.

Tenure is by licence agreement and is initially for up to two years. We provide ‘Temporary Accommodation’ so a breach of a resident’s license agreement terms, such as the use of an illicit substance or acts or threats of violence, can lead to immediate eviction..

Our staff deliver support and housing management. We do not provide any drug or alcohol treatment or personal care. Our residents are responsible for working their own programme of recovery using the local mutual aid networks. Our project is principally a safe and supported community of like-minded individuals who have made a conscious decision to engage in a Mutual Aid Community to help each other become ready for independent living.

Referral

Referrals can be started by telephone, letter or email. On receipt of the application, and once eligibility has been established, an in-person assessment will be offered. A copy of the Referral Form is HERE. If you have a current risk assessment of your own, please share this with us.

Assessment

During assessment we will:

  • Clarify the purpose of the admission in discussion with the professional referrer and the client so that an initial plan of support with relevant interventions can be established from the point of admission.
  • Take a history of existing and past drug and alcohol use and previous treatment and detoxification episodes.
  • Clarify any psychiatric or medical issues, identifying their likely impact on engagement, and exploring if external support is needed to enable full participation.
  • Carry out a comprehensive risk assessment.
  • Note any existing psychiatric medications and other current medical treatment.
  • Define clearly any appropriate liaison arrangements.
  • Clarify transport arrangements to and from the Project.

Admission

Arriving into a house full of adult men we don’t know can be very scary. We do everything we can to help new residents feel safe and supported when they arrive, making clear that we want to do everything we can to help them relax.

On admission new residents are introduced to their fellow residents and given a copy of ‘House rules and Expectations’ to read and sign. They will also sign their ‘License Agreement’. The house timetable is also explained.

The resident will then be shown around the Project, given a key for their room and introduced to the staff on duty and existing residents. A member of the house will act as a buddy to the new resident during their first two weeks with us.

General Medical Needs

New residents will be expected, and assisted, to register with the local GP practice unless they are currently registered with their own local GP in the area.

Substance Misuse Screening

Each resident will be required to supply a urine or saliva sample for drug and alcohol screening on admission.

Samples for screening may be requested randomly at any time during the resident’s stay. Screening may be requested to establish existing drug or alcohol use, other health matters, or as a result of concerns about the safety and security of the Project. Refusal to supply a sample may lead to the immediate discharge of the resident.

Allocation of Key-worker

In all cases, a new resident will be allocated a Key-worker, who will be the person responsible eto support and oversee the support plan for that individual and who will provide the majority of their 1-2-1 interventions. All residents are expected to engage in weekly 1-2-1 support session with their Key-worker.

Support Plan

A clear written support plan will be developed with the resident within the first week of admission, taking account of the original goals outlined at referral. Every resident will receive a copy of their support plan. The support plan will list the goals and interventions in relation to that resident’s stay and, subject to review, indicate any longer term needs or goals that may need to be addressed. It will take account of:

  • Any medical interventions;
  • In-depth review of the resident’s previous life experiences and the connection with their current drug (and alcohol) related problems;
  • The recovery process;
  • Engagement with the mutual aid community
  • Practical issues which may need resolution, such as welfare benefits, making contact with family and relevant professionals.

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