Among the hundreds of people accessing our Skylight Newcastle service every year, each one will have faced homelessness due to different circumstances and challenges. However, there are common factors that trap people in the cycle of homelessness and isolate them from society.
From decades of work, we know what's needed to leave homelessness behind: good health, work and financial stability. The Positive Progression project was designed to address some of these factors by improving self-esteem, self-confidence, motivation and job skills and helping members to achieve qualifications and stable housing.
The activities included basic skills education, performance and creative arts and a range of employability workshops. The project also provided well-being related activities and one-to-one support.
Evaluation of the project
We're delighted that specific outcome goals developed to measure the success of the project were all exceeded during its lifetime. Some notable achievements were:
- 155 members said their motivation had increased after attending an activity during the first year of the project (195% of target achieved).
- 301 members earned at least one qualification (301%).
- 275 members reported being ready to find work after a 1:1 session (275%).
- 98 members improved their housing situation (108%).
During its final year, the project was independently evaluated by the University of York. In addition to the positive results, the report found that the project challenged the assumption that unemployment and isolation are choice that many homeless people choose to pursue. Instead, the evaluation showed that many members, including those with direct experience of homelessness, wanted to be a part of society, to be educated, and to find work.