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28 Nov 17: our homeless neighbour - news roundup
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7 Nov 17: key facts on housing need and homelessness
November 7th

Starter Packs

starter pack networking day

Booking is now open for the Starter Packs Networking Event 2017, the annual event organised by Scottish Churches Housing Action and CRNS (Community Resources Network Scotland).

The event will take place at Stirling Baptist Church on Wednesday 15 March from 10.00 am to 3.00 pm. This free event is for committee members, volunteers and staff of starter pack schemes for homeless people, and for those interested in developing one in their area.

This year, it will be opened with an address from local Green Party MSP Mark Ruskell. There will be spotlight sessions led by starter pack projects from Highland and from Glasgow, and CRNS will report on their new Reuse Furniture scheme for clients of the Scottish Welfare fund. Workshops will focus on generating funds and on using social media to promote starter packs.

Download your programme and booking form here.

Starter Pack projects

Starter packs projects provide essential small household items to people who move into a new tenancy after a period of homelessness. By helping people settle in their new home, starter packs schemes help to prevent the revolving door of homelessness.

  • I have seen apparently strong young men in tears because we helped them
  • You could speak to eveyone who's come through and got a starter pack and they will tell you how useful it was to them
  • I remember these girls, all wild-childs - and I've seen them after they've had a starter pack and settled in, they were beautiful young women.  And there they are giving you a wee hug and saying thank you.

Scottish Churches Housing Action develops starter pack projects – over 20 throughout Scotland since 1998. We do the work to establish them as independent, locally controlled bodies. Most are registered charities and all are sustainable. Local authorities and housing associations value the contribution of starter pack projects which help set up and sustain successful tenancies. If you want to discuss how to set up a starter pack, feel free to get in touch!

The Starter Pack Network online

Now projects can join the Starter Pack Network.The network is coordinated by Scottish Churches Housing Action and allows members to share good practice and information, discuss improvement of services and to develop closer partnership working.

Where are starter packs projects?

There are starter packs projects in South Lanarkshire (New Beginnings), Falkirk (Falkirk Homelessness Project), Edinburgh (Fresh Start), the Scottish Borders (Fresh Start Borders), Moray (Moray Fresh Start), Kintyre (Supporting the Homeless in Kintyre), Mid-Argyll (Moving-On Mid-Argyll), Oban (New Start Oban), Dunoon (Starter Packs Plus), Highland (New Start Highland), Aberdeen, Stirling (Start-Up Stirling), Dundee (Starter Packs Dundee), Glasgow (Starter Packs Glasgow), Inverclyde (Starter Packs Inverclyde), North Lanarkshire (Home Comforts), Orkney (Starter Packs Orkney), Perth (Starter Packs Perth), the Western Isles (Starter Packs Western Isles) and East Dunbartonshire (Fresh Start East Dunbartonshire).

Scottish Churches Housing Action is working with Women's Aid groups in a number of areas to develop projects supporting women and their children who have experience domestic abuse.

Read the report of our visit to Home Comforts North Lanarkshire in September 2016.

If you want the details of a project or you would like to find out if a project is being developed near you, please contact us.

What is in a starter pack?

Generally a starter pack includes bedding, cutlery, crockery, pots and pans, glasses, cleaning equipment, towels and curtains. Most projects in Scotland include used items a pack but will always complete a tough quality control - the motto being “don’t give it if you would not use it yourself!”

Starter pack projects contribute to the protection of the environment by diverting tonnes of items from landfill!

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Map of SCHA's location