We want to provide a new, additional and enhanced Advocacy and Participation service to support homeless and vulnerable people including those experiencing mental health challenges and drugs or alcohol abuse in Nottingham and Nottinghamshire.
Specifically, we want to reach those who have been adversely affected by COVID-19 – helping them to make their voices heard and influence the services they receive from the grass roots to strategic level at a time when their voices are more important than ever. The homeless community are the most vulnerable and excluded people in our society and dealing with COVID-19 has increased the challenges they already face. Difficulties accessing the right health care, sources of support dramatically reduced, increased isolation. The poverty gap increasing and health inequalities they already experience, all impact negatively on their physical and mental well-being. By widening our Advocacy and Participation service, we will be able to reach more excluded and vulnerable individuals and groups, supporting them to identify and articulate their needs during and post-pandemic and bring about positive changes to services.
Mitigating the effects of COVID 19 of the most vulnerable groups in society starts with giving real opportunities to voice their concerns, articulate their experiences and fully involving them in deciding how services should be improved as we emerge from lockdown, learn the lessons from the pandemic and seek to make positive changes. SEA CIC Ltd provide people who are seldom heard, vulnerable and excluded with a voice to influence and change the services they need. An example of how we do this is our work with the ABBA group; a participation forum created by vulnerable and socially excluded individuals, SEA, the Nottingham Crime and Drugs partnership (CDP) and Opportunity Nottingham. Over the last 8 months, ABBA has enabled participants to voice their anxieties and concerns and helping them to articulate what they need in response to the pandemic.
We strongly believe that people who use support services should be at the heart of their development, delivery and review. We are the leading local organisation providing this service to homeless and vulnerable people and one of the few nationally. However, within our current service contracts, we are only able to help and work with a particular group of people.
Access to SEA and Participation service will;
- Empower people to take control of their lives
- Help vulnerable people get the help they need – now more than ever.
- Provide impartial support from an experienced Advocate to navigate through often difficult and stressful consultation and complaints processes.
- Assist providers in responding to the very real and current needs of their service users during the pandemic.
- Help individuals understand the process of constructive involvement - addressing the issues they want to raise.
- Challenge and change systems that are ridged, inflexible and throw up barriers for those people they are meant to serve.
With this additional funding, we would be able to provide an important Advocacy and Participation service for more vulnerable and socially excluded homeless people in Nottingham and Nottinghamshire.
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