The Transatlantic Practice Exchange 2017 reports bring together learning and reflections from participants' placements with US and UK homelessness services. The UK group covered Housing First for Women, Employment, Strengths Based Practice and Critical Time Intervention. The US group explored Employment, Youth Homelessness, Engaging the PRS, LGBT+ Support for Youth, and Systems Change for Chronic Homelessness.
Get involved in the Transatlantic Practice Exchange 2018
Read Sam’s story from last year and join our webinar to find out how you can take part this time.
Sam and his Employment First Exchange:
I work at C4WS Homeless Project, a small charity in Camden. We support those who are homeless into accommodation and with the process of rebuilding their lives. In the last couple of years, this support has increasingly taken the form of employability skills. This is in part due to a new emergent Employment First population, who are unable to access housing without first being in paid contracted work, and part due to our commitment to helping people develop lifelong skills that will prevent them from returning to homelessness.
I applied for a place on the Transatlantic Practice Exchange to further my knowledge in this field and explore different ideas of how to support homeless jobseekers. I was thrilled to be accepted onto the programme and was placed with Heartland Alliance in Chicago for a fortnight to embed myself in their employment-based projects.
From the moment I walked through the doors on my first day, I was welcomed by staff with a passion for showing the work they do. But the Exchange, as its name suggests, is a two-way process. So, for the many questions, I had for staff, I received a number of back from them. This is the beauty of the programme.
Yes, visiting a new project in a different country offers you the opportunity for learning new innovations. But it also facilitates a forum of mutual exploration where you can reflect upon your own work. As a frontline worker dealing with people in crisis, this is a luxury rarely afforded and so simply having the time to think about the nature of the issues you face - and the solutions and strategies you can provide - is of itself, a huge value of the Exchange.
I returned to the UK filled with new ideas and plans, not just for how to support the people accessing C4WS, but also how to bring about wider and systematic change for homeless jobseekers. This is what the Exchange does. It makes you think big – and then do big!
Join our webinar on Monday 30th October to find out more about the exchange and how you can participate.
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Innovation and good practice project manager
Jo is an innovation and good practice project manager, leading a range of projects and training including Housing First England and Trauma Informed Care.
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