Thames Reach & House of St Barnabas
Ecovis London Foundation and Thames Reach have been working together for over three years. In this time, the relationship and the strategic partnership has gone from strength to strength. This is because both organisations have shared values and ethos, and a commitment to support vulnerable adults who have direct experience of, or are vulnerable to, homelessness.
The charity’s vision is of a society where street homelessness does not exist and nobody needs to sleep rough on the streets. Its mission is to ensure that the users of its services find and sustain a decent home, develop supportive relationships and lead fulfilling lives.
Thames Reach offers a wide range of services to the local community and provides support and training for the long-term unemployed, many of whom have suffered homelessness, to help them develop the skills and confidence to find jobs. It has developed a reputation for being a rich source of competent, well-trained employees, and for having strong links with a range of key employers across the capital.
Ecovis London Foundation continues to make a valuable contribution to the work being done by the Thames Reach Employment and Skills Team. The core work of the team is to support clients to access training, volunteering or employment opportunities and work towards rebuilding an independent life.
ELF effectively compliments and enhances the range and quality of what they can offer their clients. Schemes offered include: Information Advice and Guidance Service, Volunteer Training and ‘Work Ready Programme’, which are geared towards helping people find work, and enabling participants to make real and lasting changes to their lives.
“From a broader perspective, through the ‘Work Ready Programme,’ we are breaking down barriers and building an inclusive society. In this regard, the programme’s outcomes run a lot deeper than CSR or employment targets but has a wider impact on people’s perceptions towards their communities, their employers and the homeless community around them. This in turn has the potential to bring about an attitudinal shift that we believe creates the foundation for real and lasting change.” Chris Dean, Area Manager, Thames Reach.
House of St Barnabas
In partnership with House of St Barnabas and their Employment Academy, the Ecovis London Foundation have developed and facilitated a “Transition to Work” programme.
Running for eight or ten weeks, the HOSB course focuses on three areas: Personal Leadership, Practical Work Skills and Getting and Keeping Work.
Its aim is to break the cycle of homelessness and unemployment by providing training, work experience and employment opportunities to help people find lasting paid employment.
Offering our support in CV Workshops, follow-on CV Building and one-to-one Job Advice is just part of the 10-week programme. By the end of the course, participants will graduate with a full CV and reference, a qualification in hospitality or business administration and a new network of colleagues. Graduates are then supported for a year by the Employment Academy and mentors who have been trained at the House of St Barnabas.
“Recent statistics have shown that the HOSB, Employment Academy partnership with Ecovis has successfully supported numerous participants to feel more confident about finding appropriate employment. Ecovis’s expertise is invaluable to our Participants and HOSB staff. The level of expertise that is offered, greatly enhances the quality of the support that we can deliver. The way support is delivered to out Participants is so important to us, which is why we are proud and happy to be in partnership with Ecovis.” Shirley Robinson, Head of Employment Academy, House of St Barnabas.