Touchstone Beacon Service Covid-19 update
How you will maintain a safe service and deliver essential services?
We are still open and will keep our services running.
Our team will be working with all our clients, partners, the council and other agencies every day. This is a great response from the city as a whole and a clear sign that we are working better together to provide safety and security for all our clients and those most vulnerable in these difficult times.
The Touchstone-Beacon Housing Team and service are still offering support to all our clients and have an action plan in place that is reviewed regularly.
We are offering support by phone but are also still making available essential visits where required (and within appropriate safety guidance regarding screening tenants first to check if they have symptoms and offer advice and taking precautions around social distancing and using PPE – especially where a client has been identified as having an additional Long Term Health condition)
In addition we have provided a phone (with £10 credit) to all those that didn’t have one to ensure we can keep in touch and that everyone can stay safe and well.
Contingency plans are also in place to ensure additional staffing can be accessed should existing staff be taken ill or be self-isolating. This is to ensure all our tenants continue to receive adequate support.
Additional support being offered includes supporting with sourcing and delivering food parcels and medications (we have identified some additional funds to help pay for emergency food required by clients who maybe self-isolating and/or without sufficient funds).
We are currently drafting a tenants newsletter which will be posted to all clients which will offer updated information, reassurance, guidance, tips, recipes and much more to help everyone manage during this crisis.
Over the coming weeks we will try our best to keep in touch with you all about the different measures we are putting in place to support all our clients through these tough times. Our thoughts are with everyone staying indoors – it’s not going to be easy but we are going to do everything we can to get through this together.
Beacon – Supported Housing for a Brighter Future
Touchstone is a partner in a Leeds city-wide initiative that provides supported accommodation for individuals and families with complex needs, including those who are homeless or at risk of homelessness. Beacon was launched in 2017 and is delivered by a consortium including Turning Lives Around, Touchstone and Foundation.
Access to Beacon is via referral. Referrals can come from Housing Options (Leeds City Council), other agencies or via self-referral.
The accommodation provision is a mixture of intensive accommodation, with access to staff 24-hours a day, seven days a week and dispersed properties with visiting support.
Intensive accommodation is generally provided in a shared environment and the dispersed accommodation is a combination of shared and self-contained flats. Both the support and accommodation is temporary (generally up to 6 months), the aim of which is to provide stability, promote independence and resettle clients into the community.
Tenancy training and peer support is also offered as part of the Beacon service.
If you have a general enquiry any one of three organisations will be able to help:
Beacon Volunteer Project provides meaningful activities for individual Beacon service users who face many barriers to personal development.
We also give service users the chance to receive 1-1 Befriending and peer support from trained volunteers with lived experience.
We need Volunteer Befrienders and Volunteer Peer Mentors!
If you have lived experience yourself and would like the opportunity to volunteer with our service users then please get in touch! You will also gain training and valuable experience useful for professional development or career changes.
Please contact Kim on 0113 271 8277 to find out more about this unique opportunity to help engage individuals with complex needs. You could greatly help an individual to move forward by providing befriending support and volunteering alongside support workers across the Beacon service.
Please note that this is an ongoing training and volunteer opportunity and the minimum time commitment level would be 9 months+.
- Be over 16 years old and have an established local connection to Leeds i.e. Leeds resident, family associations, previous or current employment etc.
- Be willing to participate in the Beacon support planning process and possess sufficient living skills to be able to maintain a tenancy with the support provided.
- Require a period of supported accommodation to live independently, addressing complex and multiple needs*.
*homelessness, offending, mental health and substance misuse
- Require accommodation for safeguarding purposes.
- Have limited accommodation options available, for example being unsuitable to access Private Rented Sector accommodation or the Council Lettings Scheme due to high support and/or risk issues.
- Require accommodation due to leaving institutions such as prison, hospital etc.
- Not present a level of risk that would significantly compromise the safety of staff and others working or living within close proximity of the client.