Residents were understandably anxious when lockdown happened and changes that had to be put in place to keep everyone safe. Obviously this now remains as we continue to live in a very uncertain time.
We encourage residents to stay in and limit their outside activities as much as possible, which could have proved more challenging if we hadn’t received funding to provide televisions in each room. This has had a positive impact on the residents; we have also seen a reduction in any disputes in the hostel. For some this has helped connect them with the outside world and helped them relax. The staff have reported a quieter and calmer hostel and seeing this impact, we are looking to the future and aim to continue supplying TV’s in residents’ rooms as a standard item.
The funding also helped to cover some of the costs of additional staff hours and enabled us to recoup some of our lost revenue due to changing all double occupancy rooms into single occupancy. We are mindful that this funding, although welcomed, is only for a limited period of time.
The funding also enabled us to provide additional training and support for our staff, ensuring we are equipped to recognise and better manage the changes, challenges and experiences of our residents. To this end we have a) refreshed Trauma Informed and Mental Health training to current and new team members, b) ensured that all current and new team members attend Motivational Interview Training and c) deliver Mindfulness/Stress & Anxiety training across the staff team and residents. Where appropriate, this training is done on a one-to-one basis and via digital means.
Everyone at St Paul’s, including the Trustees, staff and residents have gone above and beyond to ensure that everyone needs are meet; the homeless community are safe and the spread of COVID amongst this vulnerable community has been minimised.