'Creating community cohesion'

In 2000, Carr-Gomm opened Victoria House, a hostel in Manchester, to provide homeless people with temporary accommodation and support. The area is one of the most deprived in the city and this is one of the few projects to offer rough sleepers a stepping stone from the streets to living independently. Initially, local residents were vehemently opposed to the hostel, but staff have worked hard to overcome this by inviting local people to take part in the steering group.

Carr-Gomm realised that many local people have similar needs as the tenants of Victoria House and so many of the services are also offered to the local community. These include monthly advice surgeries about benefits, a women's group, an art group, IT facilities and training courses.

There is a good record of resettlement because of the attention given to the needs of each service user. It's a very tailored service, explains Natasha Theobald, head of marketing. We work with each individual, look at what they want to achieve and how they can do that. It is essential that they have choice and control in choosing their own path.

Gary Lashko 
Chief executive 
Duke House 
6-12 Tabard Street 
SE1 4JU 
020 7397 5341 
Reg no. 245698


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