Lotus helps women at risk to start a new life - The Worcester Observer

Lotus helps women at risk to start a new life

Worcester Editorial 7th May, 2021   0

A COMMUNITY interest company committed to eradicating homelessness for women is taking its support into Worcester for the first time.

Lotus Sanctuary is currently helping 20 women fleeing domestic violence or who are homeless to regain independence by giving them access to a home and wraparound mental health, training and employment support.

The social enterprise has taken on a significant property in the city and has already filled the mix of shared and self-contained living spaces, with the opportunity for this much-needed provision to treble over the next 12 months.

Driven by a desire to give individuals more than bricks and mortar, the critical service has seen referrals for its wrap-around support surge during lockdown and, by working collaboratively with Worcester City Council, plans are already in place to take a further two blocks that will deliver 60 bed spaces to individuals.

“Worcester is an area where the demand for our services is significant, with our first building taking just four weeks to fill from launching,” explained Gurpaal Singh Judge, chief executive officer of Lotus Sanctuary.

Lotus Sanctuary typically provides properties for two years and, during that time, will work with residents in Worcester to understand their issues before creating a bespoke ‘Passport to Independence’, including mental health and specialist support, access to training and a host of volunteering/employment opportunities.

Over the last two years, the CIC has grown from 24 units in the West Midlands to more than 750 bed spaces in seven out of the nine English regions.

Lee Davies, probation service officer at Warwickshire and West Mercia Community Rehabilitation Company, said:

“The lady I referred to Lotus Sanctuary was in a precarious situation and, following removal from a property, she became street homeless.

“Following the initial contact, communication and liaison with myself was maintained throughout the week in order to get the resident a place at short notice. She has been absolutely thrilled with the accommodation and services she has been provided with through Lotus and has displayed notable changes in her emotional wellbeing as a result.

Because of this support, she has been able to improve her relationship with her daughters and stay out of trouble.”

Visit www.lotussanctuary.co.uk for more information.

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