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From Stoke to Seattle

VOICES seattle
By Steve Barkess, Community Development Coordinator, VOICES   My adventure is soon to begin… In a few days’ time I will be traveling to Seattle to take part in the transatlantic exchange to learn about how they support people who are homeless and take steps to tackle this as a wider issue. My focus will be on the lived experience aspect of this, as this I think, would be a good place to start. I suppose my research topic is quite specific as I am sure everyone who has been successful in being selected for the exchange is. Whilst doing my research on how people are supported in the US it became apparent that a lived experience and community approach is paramount for much of the support offered to individuals. I was also really interested in the dedicated approaches to peer specialist role within the support sector and the way this is managed. So why did I focus on lived experience? I have a strong belief that people with lived experience should be employed within services at all levels. In the UK it is not uncommon that people with lived experience are turned down for roles within services due to lack of experience and knowledge of… Continue Reading

Transatlantic Practice Exchange 2018

VOICES transatlantic practice exchange
We would like to give our congratulations to our very own Steven Barkess, who has been awarded a placement on this year’s programme. Steve is one of only five lucky individuals who will be adventuring to the United States this spring in order to share good practice and exchange learning when working with homelessness and its surrounding issues. The Transatlantic Practice Exchange 2018 is supported by the Oak Foundation and delivered in partnership with the National Alliance to End Homelessness. We would also like to extend a warm welcome to Jessica McKown, all the way from Pennsylvania, who will soon be joining us here in the office, hosted by our partners at Expert Citizens.   We look forward to getting to know Jessica during her time with us here in Stoke and hope we can support her in her learning around the impact of co-production.   The UK participants are: Ed Addison, St Mungo’s in London – responding to long-term street homelessness through multi-disciplinary outreach Flora Newbigin, Cardboard Citizens in London – using theatre to involve people with lived experience Rachel Inman, Elim Connect Centre in Wells – peer support and community involvement in rural homelessness settings Rachel Woolf, The Manna at St Stephen’s in London -… Continue Reading

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