Information fair for Warrington homeless community
published on 4 Oct 2023
The Salvation Army hosts information fair for Warrington homeless community
An information fair has given vulnerable people of Warrington the drive and resources to speak to local organisations to help them with their journey out of homelessness.
The Salvation Army’s Lifehouse (hostel), James Lee House located on Brick Street, held the information fair this week, welcoming current residents to a one stop shop of support from a range of agencies which came together for the day, offering information and practical advice.
Healthcare professionals, an optometrist and a mental health team along with a trainer from JD Gym, representatives from Princes Trust and housing and benefit support specialists were on hand to offer support and advice. and food provided at the information fair was supplied by catering suppliers Aramark.
Matthew*, 58, has been a resident at James Lee House for the past nine months, finding himself homeless after a relationship breakdown with his wife and having to leave the family home. Still needing to contribute to the mortgage repayments, Matthew wasn’t able to afford a rented flat as well and so turned to The Salvation Army for support. He said: “The information fair has been great at providing access to a range of companies that could help me get back on my feet, allowing me to make that initial connection, and the fact that they come to us and are all under one roof at the same time, means that it is accessible for everyone.
“I feel at home living at James Lee House and The Salvation Army has become an extended family to me. I was at my lowest when I came to live at The Salvation Army, I had hit rock bottom but everyone at James Lee House picked me up and I now have hope for my future, which feels great. They can’t do enough for you; I am so grateful they’re helping me get my life back together.”
James Lee House has been part of Warrington for more than five decades and provides 54 beds for men and women over the age of 18 experiencing homelessness in and around Warrington. Run by The Salvation Army, the Lifehouse celebrated its 55th anniversary in July of this year.
Paul Winstone, support worker at The Salvation Army James Lee House said: “We’re strong believers that our Lifehouses are more than a place to stay; we aim to give residents a reason to get up in the morning and see themselves as people of the community and not living with the label of homelessness.
“Many people experiencing homelessness don’t have the motivation or courage to go out and meet with organisations that can help them and so the information fair was a great way to bring companies to them, signposting them in the right direction and another arm of support that we offer to our residents and the wider community in need.”
The Salvation Army hostels, known as Lifehouses, provide specialist support and guidance to help residents tackle the complex reasons that led them to become homeless and help them end this cycle.