Safe and Sound Dorset

RCN 1172371, Bournemouth

A charity working with women often homeless, sofa surfing, in temporary or supported housing, running 10 creative sessions per week, including housing and CAB appointments and sign posting to other services. We opened our coffee lounge in March 2022 as a trading arm for our charity for long term sustainability and employment opportunities for those in this disadvantaged area of BH1 4BT

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Total raised so far £8,374

Gift Aid + est. £148.75


Supporters

158

Fundraisers

0

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Our strategy is always underpinned by our beliefs and values. These values include an understanding of how much a support system around each person can make a huge difference. Belonging to a community addresses social issues of positive inclusion enabling women to build their confidence. Barriers of disadvantage and low income affect the lives of many women struggling in isolation and can be alleviated through small means such as food vouchers, community meals, laundry and shower facilities as well as a chance to connect up in small ways throughout each week, eat together and do activities together.

There are large numbers of women isolated or at risk within Bournemouth especially in BH1, (which is in the lowest 10% percentile of disadvantage in the South West of the UK ) experiencing multiple disadvantages, facing isolation from a support network or breakdown in family relationships.

Many have been drug or alcohol dependant and may be in recovery. Some are working girls earning a living to feed an addiction, from deprived backgrounds or have been within the care system. Some have issues escalating to breaking the law and re –offending. Many can not secure a consistent care plan that will have a long lasting life benefit –due to an inconsistent support network.

Many require emotional support to have a basic quality of life without endangering themselves. Many lack basic physical needs like food and shelter, or have faced some sort of physical, emotional and psychological abuse, lacking trust especially in authority and are excluded from the local community and support structures.

Alongside our outreach every Friday night, we have developed 10 creative sessions a week, where women can drop in for well being , support, a shower or laundry. Our sessions are usually held in cafes.

We support women losing housing, facing eviction, moving into B&Bs, moving into supported or permanent accommodation, supporting in 2023 with food boxes (480) care packages (105) craft kits (504), food bags (418), furniture, clothing and emotional support.

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We opened our new coffee lounge The Well in March 2022 in the prestigious Royal Arcade in the heart of Boscombe.

The Well now open a year is an accessible warm room where folk may meet, chat get good food and drink definitely be entertained by the wonderful staff and volunteers.

I appreciate having this resource where different social prescribing groups can meet. I have increased social contact with a wider variety of people from the wider community. 

I can craft, paint chat enjoy music the decorations and celebrations. It is a place I can meet friends when my flat would be inaccessible due to stairs.

A friend who uses a wheelchair is able to join me and we can craft together again.

We can get affordable nutritious food and drink.

The soup maker , blanket and heater have helped when my boiler cut out.

I have gained confidence and my voice is stronger from singing, talking and certainly laughing more.’

We have had over 250 women participate in our sessions (in four locations) over the past 3 years and we have 60 women per year on our books from outreach on the streets.

 We recently ran 2 surveys for women in our community. The top result was how important a ‘drop-in cafe’ was for women who are isolated or at risk.

Feedback
Hi  it makes such a difference to have a reason to go out to a usual place like a cafe. To be known and welcomed warmly is so beneficial. This is a tricky time for me first Mothering Sunday since Mum died. It is also her birthday in April. At times I feel so alone, having Safe and Sound let's me connect and share things, adventures, laughter, activities and food with people who do care.

Nourishment in so many areas. It was lovely to arrange to meet someone at the cafe, be able to take the dogs and have them welcomed so much. Thank you to the Team your hard work, care and effort really make a difference.

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Our coffee lounge enables us to run women’s sessions, hosting ‘warm rooms’ for many  groups as well as our own. 
We have developed 10 sessions per week, including arts and crafts, up cycling furniture and clothing to sell in our coffee lounge  and also run housing sessions with a Shelter rep and domestic violence support from the CAB.

We have women with lived experience who work  at The Well. Often lack of employment has been an issue in this deprived area of Boscombe (BH1) as well as lack of education, mental health and physical health difficulties and poor housing with many people living in HMOs 

We opened The Well to try to become more self sustainable as an organisation. 

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As well as paid staff, we host apprenticeships and opportunities for young people wanting work experience and people who see volunteering as a way to increase their self confidence and gain employability skills through hospitality and training in food hygiene.

We run digital competency courses to allow women to gain experience on-line and on the computer. This includes being aware of scams and financial resilience towards benefits and taxes. 1701975252_img_1272.jpeg

“ I cannot thank you enough for what you have done for me, you have opened doors for me that where once closed and given me hope of a better future.   I can now see the light at the end of the tunnel at last.”

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