The Brick's Partnerships Provide a New Home and a New Start for Paul*
In April 2018, Paul* found himself staying at a night shelter operating from Queens Hall Methodist Church in Wigan town centre after falling on difficult times. Paul was identified by the team at The Brick as someone who would benefit from the services that the Social Impact Bond (SIB) had to offer.
Thanks to the partnership with The Brick and Wigan and Leigh Homes, Paul was quickly offered a property of his own and he moved into his new home in June 2018.
Since Paul moved into his home, he has worked alongside an Independent Living Mentor at The Brick, who offered Paul support and guidance on a range of practical issues, such as organising utilities and other essential household bills, through to accessing healthcare and navigating the (at times complicated) benefits system.
During this time, Paul has benefitted from the personalisation budget, which he has accessed in order to purchase a fridge freezer, which in turn has helped to reduce his food costs and he has been able to cook healthier meals. The budget also allowed him to purchase a bicycle, which has helped Paul to travel more freely and the exercise from cycling has also helped with his own well-being.
Paul has taken the opportunity to work with an Asset Coach at The Brick, as part of his transition away from homelessness. Alongside the work with his Coach, Paul has explored interests and hobbies, both old and new, including game design, which is a real passion of his and something he loved to work on before becoming homeless.
Before experiencing homelessness, Paul had experience of working in a call centre in a customer service capacity and he was keen to build on this experience to get back into employment. Through The Brick Paul was introduced to a local Growth Company and has now completed a Teaching Assistant course, and participated in work experience, which have both been great additions to his CV.
Paul has a wide knowledge of all things IT, and due to this he was invited to be involved in the Hackathon ID card pilot, to create a form of accessible ID. Paul volunteered his time to get involved in the design process, using his own experiences to help shape the model.
Paul has now been in his home for over 18 months, he hopes to soon be back in employment and is excited to see what the future holds.
*Not Paul’s real name
Photo credit - Daryl Kinney