Connecting at Christmas – What have we been up to?
This week at Action Homeless we are putting a festive twist on our annual Connections Week with a wide range of events and activities across our different services. Connecting at Christmas aims to bring together clients, support workers, those who manage our different projects and our board and trustees to join in with or visit various events planned and run by staff. A calendar of these events is distributed to the organisation as a whole before the week itself, with the option for anyone to drop in and attend. We are also sharing photos and feedback from the sessions both internally and externally during the week, so that everyone can get a feel for what is going on.
Connecting at Christmas gives clients the chance to engage in fun and festive activities, and feel a sense of togetherness and community at what can often be a very isolating and lonely time of year for those experiencing homelessness.
The events also provide an informal setting for feedback and dialogue, prompting new connections and interesting conversations. So far we have had a pamper session and afternoon tea at our Women’s Refuge, complete with foot baths and face masks, as well as some festive baking for Mayfield House clients, making use of our kitchen and community living room space at the Engage Wellbeing Hub. The refurbishment funded by the Severn Trent Community Fund has made it the perfect cosy and relaxing space for activities like this.
We have also had a brunch for Housing First clients, cooked by one of our support workers who previously used to be a chef. Our Community Transitions Project put on an afternoon of chai tea and samosas, and one of our high support hostels Flora Lodge organised a pizza and party food event, complete with bingo. The Hollies, also one of our high support hostels, has hosted an afternoon of Christmas card making and festive crafts, with plenty of mince pies and hot chocolate. Support workers in the various projects have chosen and organised activities that they felt their clients would get the most out of and enjoy.
We are also weaving in to the week existing sessions and events that happen regularly throughout the year, giving managers of services and trustees the chance to see what is on offer to our clients. Examples of this are our National Lottery funded monthly Women’s Open Space, as well as our Money Talks sessions which support clients with basic budgeting and financial life skills and are funded by Leicester City Council. Keep your eyes peeled on our social media for photos and feedback from the various events, Connecting at Christmas is a great week of events that helps both clients and staff feel connected this festive season.