Sometimes you feel the winds of change blowing in politics. Sitting in a crowded room in a hotel in Liverpool during the Labour Party Conference was just one of those moments. MPs, journalists, activists, charity workers, those who had experienced homelessness, all came together to talk about the need for trauma-informed support for all those experiencing homelessness.
What does that mean? It would mean that everyone working alongside those who are facing homelessness would be trained to understand people’s traumas. That means that small things that can act as triggers for people can be avoided, the trauma of homelessness reduced.
This meeting was not the beginning of a journey. We have been journeying with people and with this aim for some time. But it’s an exciting stop on the route. There was standing room only as this subject was discussed. I was delighted by the energy in the room, the commitment to seeing change come about.
You have been part of that journey and you still are. As we step very definitely into autumn and head for Christmas, we think more and more of those who live with homelessness. As with trauma-informed support, small things can make a difference. So we are delighted to have launched our Giving a Home appeal again this winter. It has made a huge difference to people’s lives in the past and we know it will again this year.
Just £6.20 enables someone to use public transport to get to one of our drop-in centres. £15.11 could help them receive help at a drop-in centre. It’s remarkable what a difference your donations can and do make every single day.
The cost-of-living crisis faces us all, but if you are able to give just a little, we know that it will go a very long way. In donating you’ll be journeying with people that you may never meet, enabling them to take the next steps on the road to a different future.
We’ll continue to travel with politicians, activists, charity workers and all those who want to bring change to people’s lives. Together, we can make a difference.
David Smith, CEO Oasis Community Housing.