The Calico Group's Gateway service has been named ‘Best Homelessness Scheme’ award at the national 24 Housing Awards 2019 having helped almost 150 people in just 12 months.
Commissioned by Lancashire County Council to improve the health and well-being of vulnerable homeless people within the community, Gateway's transformative work impressed judges. Since opening, Gateway has been home to 146 people from all walks of life, young and old, as well as veterans.
All residents are supported 24 hours a day, 365 days a year by dedicated staff, many of whom have their own lived experience and are able to develop skills and future employability by accessing various therapies to enhance their personal resilience. They also have access to cookery classes and other practical support to develop independent living skills to sustain permanent accommodation.
“I am so proud that Gateway has been chosen by 24 Housing as the ‘Best Homelessness Scheme’ for 2019," said Kate Cunliffe, Homelessness Service Manager at Gateway. "It is truly wonderful for our staff and residents to receive such recognition.
"This is an opportunity to celebrate an excellent service that boldly breaks down the barriers for homeless individuals to feel safe and secure and begin to work towards positive change," added Kate.
At this time of year when the temperature drops, Gateway’s Cold Weather Provision offers them a warm, safe place to stay, with some 17 rough sleepers accessing this service during extreme weather conditions last winter.
In the past three months alone, eight former rough sleepers have also secured or re-secured tenancies with the support of the Homelessness Navigator, who otherwise may have stayed on the streets.
One Gateway resident said: “I was lost and I didn’t know what to do or who to trust – I will never forget the support I have had at Gateway. Now I can get on with my life and start looking forward.”
Gateway is accessible to the most vulnerable people in the community who are ready to make positive changes to improve their lives. For more information on how to access the service, please visit https://syncora.org.uk/gateway/