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Housing First Europe Hub, Helsinki

One Cool Ride is about combining my passion for both ‘overland motorbike travel’ and ‘Cool to be Kind’, the homeless support in Chelmsford, England, I’m a founder member of.

If you want to make a donation, please visit my JustGivng page.

Taina Hytönen welcomed me to Housing First Europe Hub, in Helsinki at the end of June 2019. Being a founder member of ‘Cool to be Kind’ a homeless support organisation in Chelmsford, England, having just completed a psychology degree where my dissertation was a research project focusing on ‘Rough sleepers’, and with my involvement in Cool to be Kind, I was really excited to be there.

Housing First has been proved to be the most effective strategy to help homeless people return to a life with a home. Many organisations around the world support homeless people, but the vital difference between a night shelter or offering accommodation, is the holistic ‘wrap around support’ the Housing First model focuses on. Housing First advocates that a homeless person is given housing unconditionally. When the person is ready (there are no timescale conditions) a plan is developed between the person and key-workers to facilitate all the help that’s required to ensure the person, can live long-term in their home. Research shows that people stay longer in accommodation when involved in Housing First, than other models.

I spent a couple of hours with Taina discussing the Housing First model and the amazing work Housing First Europe Hub do. They not only advocate the model, but have resources to advise, support and offer direct training to help cities and countries implement the model. The connection I made will hopefully culminate in a representative of The Hub visiting Cool to Kind and Chelmsford City Council to forward this project at home. I left The Hub inspired and motivated to continue combining my ‘overland adventure’, with ‘increasing awareness and raising money’ for homelessness.

You can follow my adventure and see what I learn along the way at danskeates.com and c2bk.co.uk 

If you want to make a donation, please visit my JustGivng page.

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