Positive Pathways

Ways out of homelessness

Inn Churches, one of our Positive Pathway delivery partners, recently took a number of guests away to a three night retreat in the Christian centre Scargill House, set in the Yorkshire Dales. Hosted by Housing Justice, this time away gave the guests a unique experience away from the challenges of the day-to-day with a chance to reflect and recharge. The group engaged in a variety of activities including walks, art sessions, working on the land, trips out and focused feedback sessions.

“Tom” was invited by Paul, the Inn Churches Project Worker, to come on the retreat with them. He came, feeling socially isolated as a result of being housed whilst trying to keep away from negative influences, which had been proving difficult.

The retreat gave “Tom” the opportunity to take stock of his life away from the city and realise his priorities. Whilst on retreat he met and made a new friend from another winter shelter and described how he felt he could “fit in” with a different group of people and contribute to “normal” conversations about things other than drugs. From reengaging with his hobbies of fishing and football to making up his mind to volunteer with Inn Churches, the retreat gave “Tom” the opportunity to get back on that “Positive Pathway” and realise that his keys to independence were getting back to work.

Positive Pathways is a five-year programme in the Bradford area, funded by the Church Urban Fund and the Bramall Foundation, which is helping to support homeless people into stable and sustained accommodation, and community life.