In July 2021 we began delivering advice services through Shaw Trust Activity Hubs as part of a project funded specifically to help reduce re-offending. The key aims of these services are to:
- Actively engage participants who have complex or multiple barriers, and who are unlikely to benefit from other services, offering support through 1-2-1 and group settings.
- Support a recovery journey led by the participant to encourage sustained engagement and progression.
- Develop an individual’s life skills, communication and self-worth in preparation for the next steps on their journey, and signposting to other provisions as needed.
- Reduce and remove barriers to community reintegration.
These services are delivered at 10 sites across the West Midlands, East Midlands and East of England
Debt, Money and Budgeting Advice
- Exploring and recording financial income and expenditure
- Checking benefit entitlement
- Looking at ways to increase income, reduce spending and find the best value for money
- Creating a budget to take better control of the finances in the future
- Contacting creditors to confirm any debt; to setup or explore reducing an instalment plan, apply for a payment holiday and, where possible, write off specific debt
- Looking at the current housing situation
- Assisting with emergency housing and repairs
- Exploring potential housing changes – taking into account rent arrears, anti-social behaviour, breach of tenancy etc.
- Checking restrictions on residency under licence
- General advice and support with identifying, securing and sustaining tenancies
Access to Services
- Securing identification
- Opening a bank account
- Assisting with self-disclosure statements
- Offering welfare advice
- Applying for grants and funding
- Exploring gambling habits
- Offering workbooks containing useful advice and tips
- Setting up an action plan
- Referral to a 24-hour support line