Changing Lives’ Making Every Adult Matter (MEAM) team in York have been highly commended in the Innovation in Housing category at the Homeless Link Excellence Awards 2019. This award acknowledges projects that have come up with a different or enhanced housing offer for people who have traditionally been seen as 'hard to house'.

York Making Every Adult Matter (MEAM) team provides intensive support and multi-agency coordination to adults facing multiple disadvantage. The people supported by MEAM often have a history of poor engagement or exclusion from local services. We aim to break down these barriers to ensure they are receiving support appropriate to their individual needs, which may include experience of homelessness, offending, substance misuse, mental ill health, family breakdown and social isolation.

Kelly Cunningham, Service Manager in York, nominated the team for their inclusive approach to ensuring local services work together. She said:

The Homeless Link Excellence Awards received over 120 entries this year so I’m incredibly proud that the team were Highly Commended in the Innovation in Housing category. This award is well-deserved and recognises the innovative and impactful work of the MEAM Team.”

Using local authority housing stock Changing Lives were able to pilot a Housing First project in York. The overall philosophy of Housing First is to provide a stable, independent home and intensive personalised support to people with multiple and complex needs who are experiencing homelessness. Secure housing is viewed as a stable platform from which other issues can be addressed.

The MEAM Team’s dedication continues to help improve the lives of people facing multiple disadvantage in York and to date eight individuals have accessed Housing First properties. The positive impact on their health, wellbeing and outlook on life has been immense and the partnership with the local authority is set to continue due to its success. As part of our commitment to partnership working the rich learning is being shared at York Complex Needs Network to influence future joint commissioning ideas.

4 members of the Making Every Adult Matter Team at the Homeless Link Excellence Awards 2019 proudly display their Highly Commended Certificate.

The team celebrate their achivement. From left to right: Lucy Douglas, MEAM project worker; Scott Canham, MEAM project worker; Donna Kennelly, MEAM team leader; Christine Shepherd MEAM project worker

Read more about our Housing and Homelessness Services: https://www.changing-lives.org.uk/services/housing-homelessness/

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