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Innovative project launched to support people experiencing homelessness in Bradford

16 April 2015 - 11:41am
| by Joss
|


[Photo Credit: The Telegraph and Argus]

An innovative project which aims to work with the community to support people experiencing homelessness with low to medium needs in Bradford has opened today, 23rd March 2015. 

Our project is housed in a newly renovated building adjacent to one of our church's and will provide accommodation for up to 42 people experiencing homelessness. In a first for the church and charity, highly experienced specialist staff will work alongside volunteers from the corps congregation and local community to play a part in the running of the centre.

The project was developed after the local community and local Salvation Army officers presented a passionate business case to the bosses which highlighted a need for more accommodation for the city’s rough sleepers. Initially the residents will be men only and if a need is identified in the coming months, the service could be extended to women. 

Major Richard Cushing, Regional Manager for our Homelessness Services , said: “We listened to the community when we heard that there was a need for a new service aimed at providing accommodation for people experiencing homelessness. This led to our development of The Orchard which we believe is an exciting new chapter for our work in Bradford.

“Our approach here is innovative as it involves engaging with the community in a new way to work together to make a difference. There will be a strong emphasis on raising self-esteem, confidence and self-belief.  This will be achieved through working with volunteers from the local community and peers to create activities which will aid skill development and help residents to reach their goals, whatever they may be. We believe in making a real difference to lives here and we are excited about the potential which now exists at The Orchard."

The Orchard is funded by The Salvation Army and will be run on a referral basis from the City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council to support people who are experiencing homelessness and have a low to medium need.  In line with our work with the community, today a small number of residents have moved in, and more will follow, gradually, in the coming weeks and months. 

Later in the year The Salvation Army will formally open the service after a review process is completed.

This year we are celebrating 150 years of transforming lives and still at the heart of every community today, supporting those in need.

Comments

Submitted by Andrew Manley on

I have lived in Bradford all of my life and seen the hostel go through many changes in its time. I was so sad when it closed down as I knew there was still genuine need in the city. It is so encouraging to see that this new innovation will be meeting some of that need. Is also great to think that the local corps and community are getting actively involved - this truly is joining in with the mission God has for the Salvation Army.

Submitted by Andy Dalton on

This is great news for Bradford and will meet very real needs. No doubt professional will be making some of the young people known to them who are suffering from joblessness and a permanent home - to this project. The Salvation Army should be congratulated for reaching out to the most vulnerable in our society. As the state beats a hasty retreat reflecting its financial and moral bankruptcy, once again it is churches like the Salvation Army who are on the frontline, standing in the gap and addressing need in caring practical ways.

Andy Dalton, Employment Support Worker, HOPES Centre, Holmewood, Bradford

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