“Catherine Booth House Lifehouse is a lifeline” - Stephen Morgan MP
Portsmouth South Labour MP, Stephen Morgan, visited a Salvation Army centre in the city yesterday which provides temporary accommodation and support for young, vulnerable families and mothers-to-be.
He went to Catherine Booth House on St Paul’s Road in Southsea to meet staff, residents and The Salvation Army’s local Divisional Commander, Lieutenant-Colonel David Shakespeare. They discussed the implications of potential government proposals to change the way facilities such as this one are funded.
If the reform is implemented as planned, residents of Catherine Booth House Lifehouse could find it harder to access financial support because the government has decided to fund ‘short-term’ supported housing entirely through discretionary local authority grants.
Without reliable funding, The Salvation Army believes it will be much harder to provide secure accommodation and appropriate support in Portsmouth — the future sustainability of Catherine Booth House Lifehouse is now uncertain.
Catherine Booth House Lifehouse, which opened in 2009, can accommodate 21 families – couples with children, single male and female parent families and expectant mothers – in self-contained, furnished flats. Once they’re at the centre, staff and Portsmouth City Council support the residents to develop the life skills they need to help move on and into a home of their own.
Stephen Morgan MP said: “It’s clear that Catherine Booth House Lifehouse is a lifeline for young families and mothers-to-be – it’s a safe place where they can come to begin their journey towards a stable life in a new home.
“As an MP, I regularly meet people who need help and advice and it’s reassuring to know that The Salvation Army is providing this life-changing and expert support for some of the more vulnerable people who live in my constituency.”
Gillian Suckley, service manager at Catherine Booth House Lifehouse said: “The work we do here at Catherine Booth House Lifehouse to support our residents to regain their independence and take control over their lives is vital and I want to thank Stephen Morgan for taking the time to come and visit us today.
“Catherine Booth House Lifehouse is a safe, stable and calming environment where young and vulnerable families can come to stay, take stock and begin rebuilding their lives. Our residents get the support they need from our team of experts to develop their life skills and self-confidence so that they are to able move on with their lives and on into new homes of their own.”
The Salvation Army’s Divisional Leader for Southern Division, Lieutenant-Colonel David Shakespeare said: "The people who come to stay at Catherine Booth House Lifehouse do so at very difficult times in their lives and it was very helpful to have Stephen Morgan MP coming along to meet our residents today, to hear their stories and learn about the work The Salvation Army is doing to support them."
Stephen Morgan MP visited Catherine Booth House Lifehouse on Monday 26 March 2018.