AGENDA FOR NEXT SHAN MEETING
Date/Time: Tuesday 14th September 2021 1100 – 1300
*** Following 18 months of Zoom meetings because of the COVID-19 situation, we will be back to face to face meetings – thanks to the folk at Southend Christian Fellowship allowing free use of their premesis ***
- Introduction, welcome, minutes, house rules, apologies (John B) (5 mins)
- Round the room introductions (All) (5 mins)
- Information sharing and Partnership working etc. (Gemma / John S) (15 mins)
- Police update (David Gardiner) (10 mins)
- Immigration update (Derek Edwards) (10 mins)
- Modern slavery update (Dan Pratt) (10 mins)
- Aspirations update (Marie Edmonds) (10 mins)
- Southend plan for housing (Claire Victory) (10 mins)
- Council housing update and looking ahead (Olivia, Glyn) (20 mins)
- Round the room (especially for those who have not yet spoken) (10 mins)
- AOB and close (John B) (5 mins)
Times are approximations, for guidance only. In case of overrun, we will finish before 1.00pm
It helps to confirm whether or not you can attend and/or suggest matters to be raised.
Please bring copy of agenda and related papers to the meeting.
We thank Southend Christian Fellowship for freely hosting our meetings.
Please note the next SHAN meeting (after this) is 09 November 2021
Meetings normally scheduled to take place at the Plaza Centre, 11-1; tea, coffee available from 10.45.
SHAN meetings are by invitation only. If you don’t have an invite and want one please contact us and give your reason for wanting to attend.
HOW TO PREPARE AND THINGS TO NOTE
- There is free car parking in the nearby streets and meter parking in car park by Tescos.
- Those with an interest in homelessness in Southend (including sanctuary seekers) are welcome to attend.
- We encourage all attending to participate but please keep your comments succinct, relevant and respectful, aimed toward helping the homeless in Southend.
- Because many attend our meetings, many with a lot they can share, we have to ration the time people get to speak, so when you speak – keep to the point and try and make it count!
- We do not discuss named specific individuals or specific cases.
- Unless strictly relevant to the business in hand, we do not discuss named specific organisations.
- Do use the opportunity to share your news and ask questions, and network with others – before, during and after the meeting.
- We are grateful to the members of Southend Christian Fellowship for allowing us free use of their premises.
- Because we have limited admin support, those attending meetings are advised to bring their own copies of relevant papers e.g. agenda.
- We are keen to keep members updated on what is happening that might affect Southend’s homeless, so please make known anything you know that might pertain to this.
- We realise there is a lot we cannot do to help the homeless but there are some things we can do, and it is this we try to focus on.
- Check below how to contact us and, if you wish to be kept informed, do request to be added to our regular (typically once a month) emailings.
DATES OF FUTURE SHAN MEETINGS
09 November 2021. We normally meet the second Tuesday every other month – watch this space for details.
IN NORMAL CIRCUMSTANCES: Unless otherwise specified, all meetings will be held at The Plaza Centre (600 Southchurch Road, SS1 2PT) and will be between 11am and 1pm, normally Tuesday – changes will be notified well in advance. We appreciate the hospitality and support of Southend Christian Fellowship for allowing us use of their facilities for free. Their centre operates a cafe, where food and drink may be purchased at a reasonable cost. They offer free tea and coffee between 10.45 and 11.00.
These meetings are open to any with an interest in helping the homeless in Southend, and many of the key players that are involved with helping Southend’s homeless population and related matters do attend. It would be helpful if you could let us know if you plan to attend and also to raise anything you feel we could/should discuss. Those attending are invited to contribute but given the breadth and depth of topics discussed we request points be made succinctly and respectfully. We aim to invite “experts” in the field to attend our meetings when discussion relates to their area of expertise.
MINUTES OF PREVIOUS MEETINGS
SOUTHEND ROUGH SLEEPER LEAFLET
Something we have produced is the Southend where to go if your are homeless leaflet, which attempts to do just that. The idea is to succinctly fit as much information as we can on a double sided A4 page, with it being presented in an A5 book form and handed to those who might find the information helpful.
We update this regularly as changes are continually occurring. Click on the link below to get your own copy. The latest available version is V4.2. Please notify us if you spot changes that may be needed.
Despite some progress being made, the needs around homelessness in Southend remain significant and especially so given this period of economic austerity. While this remains the case SHAN will seek to help and encourage members to serve the homeless and other needy folk who live in our beloved town of Southend-on-Sea, in particular identifying where the gaps are and doing our bit in helping fill them.
SHAN TERMS OF REFERENCE
- meet from time to time, but a minimum of four times a year, to discuss homeless issues with a view to finding and implementing solutions and do so in a spirit of partnership.
- provide a compassionate network, based on trust and understanding, that will support members in the work they do concerning homeless and other vulnerable persons.
- understand the issues around homeless people, including how needs are being met or not being met in Southend, and propose, support and help implement practical and enduring solutions, including the identification and promotion of good practice.
- understand government (central and local) policies with respect to homeless people and specifically to engage and partner with Southend Borough Council in the implementation of its Homelessness Prevention Strategy and whenever needs are identified or opportunities arise.
- share and disseminate information regarding homelessness and issues affecting those who are homeless, within SHAN and to those who are in contact with SHAN members.
WHAT SHAN HAS DONE SO FAR
SHAN began in 2008 when a number of us found there were a number of homeless people, typically single folk, who we got to meet that were not getting the help they needed. Often such folk would turn up at the Council and be signposted to non-existent services and because of a lack of resource and money the Council did little more, focusing their efforts on those they had a statutory duty to house. The local homeless hostel run by HARP did provide some help but it was limited and often overnight accommodation was full. Some of the homeless people did not engage with the services that were available and this was not helped given the mental health and addiction issues many were experiencing.
At that time the Council were looking to close their own homeless hostels as well as produce a homeless prevention strategy working in partnership with the voluntary and community sector (VCS). SHAN was born out of this paradigm and the words of the acronym: Southend, Homeless, Action and Network describe precisely what we set out to achieve. SHAN has never become formally constituted and the best it has come up with to date and that governs what it does is our terms of reference (click here or see above).
We recognise that homelessness is a huge subject with many views being offered as to how to deal with it. While we do what our TOR says, we recognise our members are of all faiths and none and from different political and ideological persuasions. As such we tend not to get involve in campaigning and try not to be divisive. When it comes to initiating projects, this is normally undertaken by partner organisations, with members helping where they can.
SHAN has, however, been successful in bringing together a wide range of disparate partners with an interest in homelessness in order to make a difference, starting with the biggies: such as Southend Borough Council, HARP and Southend Citizens Advice Bureau, and includes many voluntary organisations and faith groups. While it is for others to blow our trumpet, we have done what we set out to do and some of the improvements and facilities seen since that time has been part down to us. One of our main successes comes out of the networking ethos: bringing together parties that might otherwise not meet has an effect!
We have organised two successful conferences, one on immigration and one on homelessness and this has sparked of more action. We meet every other month with full agendas on important topics of concern, with speakers and lively discussion. Our meetings are generally well attended by a wide cross section of those representing statutory, voluntary, community, church groups and individuals. We aim to inform and inspire and make a difference for our homeless friends Those who do attend invariably find sharing information and the networking that goes on to be of immense value.
SHAN continues to meet every other month and our meetings continue to be well attended, with each meeting seeing new members. We still address matters of general concern to our members and everyone is welcome to contribute. SHAN meetings remain a useful means where we cam inform one and another as to what is going on regarding homeless related matters. We recognise differences and encourage joint working. The end we are working toward is dealing with what remains a serious issue in the town, that of homelessness, and helping bring our town’s rough sleepers to a better place where some if not all of their needs are met.
Despite some progress being made, the needs around homelessness in Southend remain significant and especially so given this period of economic austerity. While this remains the case SHAN will seek to help and encourage members to serve the homeless and other needy folk who live in our beloved town of Southend-on-Sea, in particular identifying where the gaps are and doing our bit in helping fill them. Our meetings continue to be well attended and given the wide ranging support and interest we are confident we will continue to play a part in addressing some of the homeless issues in Southend.
Email John Barber (SHAN Chair) at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to be added to the SHAN distribution and receive notifications about our meetings and other items that may be of interest relating to homelessness, or you simply wish to comment, inquire, engage. His telephone contact is: 01702-616302.
One helpful resource that considers many of the homeless issues relevant to Southend is an e-book titled Homeless Reflections
The following is a shan presentation
This isn’t the official SHAN website (there isn’t one), but it is felt that by having a web presence this will be helpful in order to provide any who are interested with a few words of explanation of what we do and some relevant up to date information, in particular regarding our activities – past, present and future. This webpage is regularly maintained and is worth checking out periodically to find out what is going on. We operate an extensive e-distribution list which we send out to, typically once a month, regarding activities of interest to SHAN members. If you wish to be included in this list, wish to make a comment, provide feedback or know more then please let us know.
Last updated 01/09/21