The experts are the people we are trying to help

I was in London yesterday at a national meeting to discuss how using diverted giving schemes could help reduce homelessness. I left the meeting feeling uneasy, frustrated so much so here i am still sat reflecting. There were many around the table who were pretty well educated, but only two including myself who had any actual REAL life LIVED experience. I get it that services need money to operate in order to deliver some essential services, but what really gets my goat is sometimes there is a view that more resources = more results, conversations focused on if we

Provide a roof over their heads, then we can get them off the streets!

Provide them with scripts then we can get them off drugs !

Provide them with training, we can get them jobs!

A lot of these people who are vulnerable who we are talking about have developed coping strategies that don’t quite fit nicely with the social norm, they have developed coping strategies based on past personal experiences. They take drugs to block shit out, they prefer the streets than the prospect of dealing with the responsibility of managing a tenancy, they resist help because they have been let down before, whether that be by the system, families, their up bringing, the coping strategies that they had developed have been developed over years and sometimes will not be resolved by providing a roof over their head, getting them clean from drugs or getting them a fucking job.

People talked about diverted giving campaigns ya know like sponsor a donkey, pay five pounds per month and you can get regular updates on how your donkey is getting on, are people actually going to go down that route!!! I mean are people seriously considering this option? a marketing ploy to get donations out of people to fund essential services? isnt that just another word for BEGGING?

Adopt or sponsor a rough sleeper?, adopt or sponsor a drug addict? REALLY?

What these people really need is time, a safe space away from all the external shit and time to almost deprogram themselves, with guidance, of course, but this is a longer-term strategy the government are fucking deluded if they think by throwing 40 million amount of funding to local areas is going to eradicate people sleeping rough by 2027. now i am not saying it wont help, don’t get me wrong, but its gonna take more than money to help our societies most vulnerable, we need a change in attitude.

Some of those sat around the table yesterday was essentially marketers using the meeting as an opportuntiy to sell their own products and ideas, with claims that their way will attract funding to solve the problem. If someone helps get someone off the streets ‘they have succeeded’ if someone gets someone off drugs “they have succeeded” if someone gets someone a job “they have succeeded” but it’s not the charities who have succeeded or who can claim the success stories, it’s the fucking people themselves! 

People aren’t fucking robots, they are complex beings with their own unique varying challenges and to for some individuals to make claims assume that one person or one organization can solve all the issues and problems of some of the societies most vulnerable individuals are fucking deluded. 

No-one except myself is ever going to make a claim to my “success” or my “achievements” YES there were some people who helped and guided me along the way, they were vital, but ultimately it was me who took a risk and made the change’s and no one will take that away from me. 

So you can fuck off with your degrees and research projects, you are fucking playing at it, people will always respond better when they are listened to when they feel heard when people make time for them, no amount of scripts, roofs or jobs can replace human connection, however human connection takes time and 8 years ain’t long enough in my humble opinion.

Rant over, offload over, reflection time over, grounding myself in what i believe achieved, for today at least


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One Reply to “The experts are the people we are trying to help”

  1. Spot on ,isn’t that always the case ,you know what these people don’t recognise is ,as you said the vulnerable folks need on going support to even accomplish the smallest task ,give someone a roof over their heads doesn’t mean they can maintain all the resposibility ,they have spent so long in just surviving
    To me it’s like me taking a first aid course then be expected to do surgery

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