2020 July 13 by Verity Jones
Jasmin [Jazz] Silk-Reeves, personal banking manager at Nationwide Bath, is to climb up and down the height of Mount Everest using just a stepper and grit determination. The challenge, which will see Jazz tackling a massive 115,000 steps on her indoor stepper in the bank’s branch on Union Street, seeks to raise money for Julian House to support their life saving work with people experiencing homelessness.
Jazz is no stranger to climbing mountains, after taking on the charity’s Kilimanjaro Challenge in February. However, climbing a mountain on a stepper is incredibly different. Starting 17th August, the challenge will see Jazz stepping every day whilst the store is open over the course of two weeks.
Of the challenge, she said: “I’m so delighted that I am able to support Julian House with fundraising again. After climbing Kilimanjaro back in February, it only felt right to go bigger this time. With the current circumstances, I will be completing the steps up Everest from the safety of our branch We love the work that Julian House does to support the homeless here in Bath. Their work makes a real difference to the community.”
Jess Gay, Senior Community & Events Fundraiser at Julian House added: “This is an amazing challenge which will take a lot of determination on Jazz’s behalf. I imagine stepping will get extremely tiering and tedious, so I hope a lot of community will come out to support her and donate in store or to her Just Giving Page. Due to the Coronavirus, the cancellation/postponement of our fundraising events and the initial closure of all our charity shops and bike shops, has meant we’ve predicted an income loss of at least £200,000. The money Jazz will raise will be used to help fund our services, like our hostel, domestic abuse refuge and outreach, so we can continue supporting very vulnerable people at this difficult time.”
Help Jazz reach her £2000 target by donating here or visiting and donating in branch, 21-22 Union Street, Bath. Every pound and penny helps: www.justgiving.com/fundraising/jazzupeverest
2020 June 10 by Verity Jones
You can support our life changing services by setting up a Bike Donation Drop-Off in your community.
Our good work relies on a steady supply of donated unwanted bikes. A pop-up bike donation drop-off is a bike donation drive where we challenge you to find at least 5 unwanted bikes from your community, be that a business, school, university, scout/guide or church group. You might find these by asking your friends, family, neighbours or colleagues, or by promoting your bike donation drive on-line or around your local area.
Your bike donation drive may last a few weeks where you collect and store bikes until you have enough for us to collect, or you can organise your donors to drop bikes off on a single day, just in time for us to collect. It’s up to you.
All you need is a secure, dry space to store the bikes and once you’re ready, we’ll drop by with our van and collect them.
What kind of bikes do we need?
We need bikes that are mostly rust-free and have been kept dry. We need all styles and sizes; mountain bikes, BMXs, ladies’ bikes, kids bikes and vintage racers are all in demand.
If a bike has been left outside and is rusty, unfortunately it won’t be economically viable for us to refurbish it and it will actually end up costing us money to scrap it. If you’re unsure just get in touch with one of our bike workshops and they will be able to advise.
Why host a Pop-Up Bike Donation Drop-Off?
We simply couldn’t operate without the kindness of people being willing to donate their unwanted bike to us. By collecting donations for us you will be helping to transform the lives and futures of people who are homeless and socially excluded. You will be helping to protect the environment by preventing an unwanted bike going to landfill, and by keeping a bike on the road, you’ll also be contributing to cleaner air and less congestion.
How to get started
Getting started is really easy.
Just get in touch with your nearest Julian House Bike Workshop and let us know you’re interested in hosting a pop-up bike donation drop-off.
Bath Bike Workshop | email@example.com | 01225 463350
Trowbridge Bike Workshop | firstname.lastname@example.org | 01225 764485
Bristol Bike Workshop | email@example.com | 0117 951 2541
Exeter Bike Workshop | firstname.lastname@example.org | 01392 432788
We’ll then request some further information and discuss your bike donation drive in more detail.
How your donated bikes make a real difference to people’s lives
Thanks to your efforts, people like Danielle are using bikes to move forwards with their lives.
Danielle spent her childhood in foster homes, became homeless at 17 and spent years in abusive relationships.
Eventually she found the strength to seek help and start putting her life back together. She completed a build-a-bike course at our bike workshop, where an unwanted bike was put to good use helping to rebuild her confidence, develop new skills and gain work experience. Danielle succeeded in transforming a donated bike into a machine she could be proud of. She went on to undertake a work placement and received further support and training from Julian House to find and secure paid work.
“This bike means everything to me, because I built it. I never knew I could achieve something like this. To me it’s more than just a bike; it’s my freedom and my independence. My support worker calls it my ‘wheels to recovery”.
Thanks to your bike donations, people like Danielle will have access to training, support and a lasting route out of hardship and homelessness.
2020 April 23 by Verity Jones
ITV West Country are planning to run a piece on their news bulletins on Thursday 23rd April at 6pm – focusing on the increased demand which domestic abuse agencies are seeing as a consequence on the Coronavirus lock down.
We previously stated this would be Wednesday the 22nd but it has been postponed to Thursday 23rd April.
Julian House is the main provider of support to women, children and men escaping domestic abuse in B&NES. The staff team have seen a significant rise in telephone inquiries and referral requests from partner agencies.
Read how we’re supporting people in our refuge here.
2020 April 20 by Verity Jones
Local businesses, Royds Withy King, The Royal Crescent Hotel and Actual Experience have signed up to take of the national 2.6 Challenge in aid of Julian House, happening on Sunday 26th April.
The national charity challenge, organised by mass-participation event organisers including London Marathon Events and Parkrun, will see thousands taking part across the country and raising money for their charity of choice. Participants are encouraged to come up with an activity based around the numbers 2.6 or 26 and fundraise or donate to help save the UK’s charities on or from the 26th April.
The challenge, which hopes to raise millions for charities nationwide, has been devised in response to the thousands of fundraising events that have been cancelled due to Covid-19. As a result of the pandemic, The National Council for Voluntary Organisations CEO Karl Wilding estimates that the UK charity sector will lose £4 billion in income.
The situation for Julian House is no different. Jessica Gay, Senior Community and Events Fundraiser said: “Due to the Coronavirus, the cancellation/postponement of our fundraising events and the closure of all our charity shops and bike shops, we’ve predicted an income loss of £200,000. This is vital income needed to fund our life saving services including our hostel and domestic abuse refuge. Demand for our services is incredibly high, and we need to keep them open to support vulnerable men and women and save lives.”
“We thrilled that Ryods Withy King, Royal Crescent Hotel and Actual Experience have all signed up to support us, and hope that many other local businesses and individuals, young and older, will do the same.”
To support Julian House’s work and sign up to the challenge, click here. There’s also unique challenge ideas and a marketing fundraising toolkit.
You can find more information about The 2.6 Challenge here.
2020 April 20 by Verity Jones
Over the weekend, young couple Matthew Enemy and Tilley Sheridan took on a mammoth challenge to help raise vital funds to keep Julian House’s lifesaving services open during the Coronavirus crisis – climbing up and down the height of Mt Everest on their staircase.
From Friday 17th April to Sunday 19th, Matt (27) and Tilley (26) scaled the stairs of their flat block in Bath 528 times, walking six hours a day. This equated to a total of 8,848m up the stairs and 8,848m back down – the equivalent of the tallest mountain in the world.
With an initial fundraising target of £200, they were blown away by donations from friends and family who helped them reach over £1,200 for the charity. After word spread about their incredible feat, the donations are rising, and the couple would love to smash their new target of £2000 for Julian House.
Speaking of what inspired them to do the climb, Tilley said: “We are quite active and adventurous people and during this time of lockdown we have been setting our own challenges to keep us moving. Matt has always dreamt of climbing Mt Everest, but, the expense and the dangers, has meant this has never happened. We saw that someone had set themselves this challenge and thought it was great way for us to raise some money for an amazing charity whilst also doing something we’ve always wanted to do from the ‘comfort’ of our own home!”
Jess Gay, Senior Community & Events Fundraiser at Julian House added: “This is an amazing achievement and a huge well done to Tilley and Matt for not only completing it but also raising an incredible sum for Julian House. Due to the Coronavirus, the cancellation/postponement of our fundraising events and the closure of all our charity shops and bike shops, has meant we’ve predicted an income loss of at least £200,000. The money Tilley and Matt have and continue to raise will be used to fund our services, like our hostel, domestic abuse refuge and outreach, so we can continue supporting very vulnerable people at this difficult time.
They’ve both proved what can be achieved at home, and I’m sure their challenge will be an inspiration to many.”
You can help Matt and Tilley reach their £2000 target by donating here.
2020 April 14 by Verity Jones
Bristol University Press (BUP) is supporting Julian House by seeing how far they can ‘walk’ Around the World (virtually) during April. If they were to walk it, it would be 24,902 miles!
You can also join in with the challenge on your daily exercise, it is very easy to get involved:
1) Sign up your name (or alias) here and log your weekly steps or miles. Running, walking, cycling, every step counts!
2) Donate to BUP’s Just Giving page here and ask your friends, family or colleagues to sponsor the challenge.
If you and your colleague would like to organise another challenge to help raise vital funds for Julian House, but would like some help, email email@example.com
2019 May 28 by Verity Jones
From 7th-15th February 2020 a group of 12 individuals will be climbing the tallest free-standing mountain in the world to raise vital funds and awareness for Julian House and the people it supports.
Kilimanjaro is no mean feat and while the challenge will require determination, stamina and team work, it’s a challenge that will not only change your life but also the life of someone within our care.
By climbing Kilimanjaro you’ll not only be raising an incredible amount of money for Julian House, but you’ll also be standing up and taking action against homelessness.
Unless you’ve been homeless it’s hard to image what it’s like. But we can tell you what homelessness isn’t. It isn’t prejudice, it isn’t decreasing, it isn’t the result of one single problem and it doesn’t go away when you walk past it. At Julian House, our projects and services not only address the symptoms of homelessness but also the underlying reasons why men and women are forced on to the streets and seek to find solutions to empower and help people build sustainable, independent lives. Whether that be through supporting people into their own accommodation, learning new skills, returning to college, volunteering or finding employment. All of the money raised during this challenge will go towards helping a person build a safer, happier, more fulfilled life.
- Return flights to and from Bristol
- Stay in the Marangu Hotel, when not on expedition. This beautifully situated hotel, on the slopes of Kilimanjaro, stands in twelve acres of lush gardens with a swimming pool and croquet lawn.
- 5 day trek to the top of Kilimanjaro (ascend in 4 days, 1 day descent.)
- Participants only carry a small day sack/rucksack. Majority of kit carried by porters.
Top challenge highlights:
- Accomplish one of the greatest challenges of all time by ascending the world’s highest freestanding mountain.
- Camp under the stars while on expedition.
- Watch the sunrise as you reach the Crater’s Rim.
- Explore some of the most varied landscapes on earth, from montane forests, to high altitude deserts.
- Meet and be-friend mutual supporters of Julian House.
- Experience traditional Tanzanian culture and cuisine.
How can I take part?
For more information and to sign up click here.
We ask for a registration fee of £400 to secure your place and a guarantee you can raise a minimum sponsorship target of £3,500. All travel, accommodation and the majority of meals are included within this challenge cost. The only items not covered are a Tanzania visa (£40), travel insurance, tips for guides, drinks and other items of a personal nature.
While £3,500 may seem a daunting figure, we’ve created a really comprehensive fundraising guide that gives you a step by step guide to help you raise the funds. I’m also on hand every step of the way to help you achieve your target. Just drop me an email or give me a call on firstname.lastname@example.org / 07939055432
2019 May 27 by Verity Jones
Writer, broadcaster and Daily Mail columnist, Bel Mooney will be the official quiz mistress at the annual Julian House Brain of Bath quiz. Popular amongst corporates, this year’s fundraising event will take place on Thursday 4th July from 7pm in Bath’s prestigious Assembly Rooms.
Up to 25 company teams will go head to head and compete for the coveted Brain of Bath 2019 title. Now in its 20th anniversary year, the organisers are hoping the event’s fun, yet competitive spirit will carry on under the watchful eye of Bel Mooney.
Cecil Weir has been organising the event since 2001 and is delighted that the busy writer and broadcaster was able to support the event “Although by their very nature quizzes are competitive one of the great things about the Brain Bath is that the teams participate in a fun and light-hearted way. The number one goal of the evening is to raise funds towards the work of Julian House but along the way there’s no rule that says you can’t enjoy yourself at the same time. I’m sure Bel will help us to achieve that and perhaps share some snippets from an amazing career. Indeed, her first job in journalism was at the Bath Chronicle!”
“Such events are vital to an organisation like Julian House. Homelessness is not a fashionable cause and we have to work very hard for a disproportionate amount of our income. However, once we have an opportunity to involve companies in our work and dispel some of the myths attached to homelessness, gaining further advocacy is not normally an issue.”
The event will once again be sponsored by long time Julian House supporter, Deloitte. A light supper will also be served by renowned caterers Searcys and contestants will have the opportunity to bid for a carefully selected range of auction prizes in the mid-point break – including a highly desired Mulberry Bag.
You can find out more and sign up to The Brain of Bath here.
2019 April 15 by Verity Jones
Lee was referred to the project by his supported accommodation key worker, he had spent a brief spell in prison and was keen to rebuild his life. After a successful referral session with the Employment Support Lead, he was offered a place on the Build a Bike course and, because he had expressed a desire to develop his IT skills, was also signposted towards ECDL training. The European Computer Driving Licence sessions are delivered in-house, by our partners at Learning Curve, with sessions running every Thursday, at the Bike Workshop.
Lee successfully completed the Build a Bike course and is continuing to attend ECDL sessions and making very good progress. His Tutor refers to Lee as ‘a hard worker who is keen to progress’ and ‘he is already working towards a L2 qualification’. In discussion with the ES Lead, Lee stated that he ‘is now really keen to rebuild his life and re-enter the employment market in order to sustain himself financially’. Feedback from Workshop staff has been overwhelmingly positive, and as a result, Lee has been invited to carry on his association with the Bike Workshop, by undertaking non-paid work placement with us. This will offer an opportunity to further develop skills learnt during the Build a Bike training; Lee is currently considering the offer. Staff have described Lee as ‘good to be around, a hard worker who listens well and is able to carry out instructions independently’. Lee has certainly been a positive influence in the Workshop, developing reciprocal working relationships with staff and peers, we wish him all the best for the future.
2019 April 15 by Verity Jones
Fancy a relaxing lunchtime yoga session overlooking the beautiful roof tops of Bath?
On Friday 17th May local yoga teacher, Ruth Preston, will be holding her first lunchtime yoga class on the beautiful roof terrace of Cambridge House in Bath. The session will not only enable participants to relax and de-stress after a busy working week, but it’ll all be for a good cause too. As the class will be held in aid of local charity Julian House.
Ruth has been practising yoga for nearly 20 years, exploring hatha, Scaravelli, yin, Bikram and Ashtanga. Whether it’s Ashtanga or Zen yoga Ruth encourages students to be mindful of their bodies, to practice with awareness of both body and breath and most importantly to love and find joy in their practice.
Ruth Preston said, “I’m hosting this lunchtime yoga class to give those working in this beautiful city a little time and space to stop and recharge. In exchange for the class I’m asking participants to make a £10 donation to Julian House. I’ve selected Julian House because they are a local charity who support those living in our community who are having a really hard time.
Cambridge House, based on Henry Street in Bath, also promises to offer stunning panoramic views of the city and the surrounding hills, making it the perfect location to unwind and relax.
The session will run from 1pm to 1:45pm. For more information and to book your spot please email email@example.com. Due to the space the session is limited to 12 people.
“We’re hoping that this will be the first a series of lunchtime yoga sessions, and I’ll be keeping everyone posted on more dates.
2019 April 10 by Verity Jones
Senior Branch Manager Stephanie Pritchard and Assistant Branch Manager Amber Nutt from Nationwide Bath will climb the ‘tallest free-standing mountain in the world’ to raise vital funds for Julian House and its clients this September.
In February 2020, friends and colleagues Amber Nutt and Steph Pritchard will be joining 10 other people taking on the challenge of a lifetime, climbing Kilimanjaro to support local charity Julian House.
The challenge, taking place in February 2020 will see the pair trek 40 miles across some of the most spectacular and varied landscapes on earth. From Kilimanjaro’s rich montane forests filled with amazing flora and fauna, across its other-worldly high-altitude desert, past Kilimanjaro’s cathedral high glaciers, before reaching the crater’s rocky rim and summiting the iconic Uhuru Peak, 5896 metres high.
By taking on the challenge, the brave pair seek to raise thousands of pounds for the charity who supports social excluded people in Bath and across the South West. Everything the ladies raise will be going to support the charity’s vulnerable and marginalised clients, helping them build independent, sustainable and more fulfilled lives.
Of the challenge, Amber Nutt said: “We’re understandably nervous, as we’ve never taken on such a physical challenge before. But we both see it as a pinnacle in our personal achievements – something we can be proud of, to say that we’ve taken on such a big endeavour for such a good cause.
Plus, Steph is going to be reaching a milestone in her life (30th birthday) this year and she wanted a memorable way to commemorate the occasion. What a great way to embrace it for everything that it’s worth while raising vital funds and awareness for Julian House.”
Senior Community and Events Fundraiser, Jessica Gay, added: We’re delighted that Steph and Amber will be joining us on the Kilimanjaro Challenge this year. The Nationwide Bath team are such fantastic supporters of ours, helping us in all aspects of fundraising and raising awareness about the importance of our services including during its very recent 1-year anniversary celebrations. So, it’s great we’re going to continue and celebrate this partnership up one of the greatest mountains on Earth.
For those keen to learn more and sign up to the challenge, there are still a few places available. Click here for more info.
2019 April 8 by Verity Jones
This year’s Big Bath Sleep-Out has raised an amazing £48,000. That’s absolutely incredible and everyone at Julian House is thrilled with the result both in terms of the funds raised and the awareness of the cause. That’s thanks to all of you who took part!
The money you’ve raised really is life changing. All of clients that come into our care, whether that be through our Manvers Street Hostel, one of our supported housing projects, our refuge for domestic abuse victims, our skills training sessions at our bike workshops or another one of our services, benefits from you taking part in the Sleep-Out this year.
Just think, £50 could buy a wholesome meal for 30 service users staying at our emergency hostel. £250 could purchase a starter pack to help an abused mother and children into new accommodation and £5,000 could pay for 15 socially excluded people to attend a 6-week Build-a-Bike course in our Bath Bike Workshop. It’s here they gain the confidence, skills and work experience needed to progress towards employment.
By sleeping out for just one night this year, you’ve helped to transform a life for the better.
Senior Community and Events Fundraiser, Jessica Gay said: “Alongside the money you’ve helped raise, you’ve also raised much needed awareness about homelessness and the hardships associated with it. It was a pleasure getting to chat to some of you on the night about raising awareness and I know many of you were really passionate about making a difference. We had fantastic support from across the community, including school groups, community groups, families and corporates.”
Energy company Pure Planet was one of the local corporates who took part. Of the challenge, Data Scientist Connor Goddard said: “Homelessness is massive problem in this country, and Bath – like every other major town and city in the UK – has its share of those who have no place to call home. As I commute to and from work, I see people everyday who have slept out in the cold, and whilst I can only imagine what it must be like to have no choice in this, I wanted to take part in the challenge in order to gain a greater understanding and appreciation of what this must be like, and to raise awareness that this is a real issue that we all have a part to play in solving.”
Despite finding the experience “tiring, but enjoyable,” Connor added “I think most importantly, the experience really brought home to me that having a roof over my head every night is something I absolutely take for granted, and the thought of one day not having this is really quite scary. What surprised me, was the realisation that worries of being cold and wet came second to a more powerful feeling of being exposed – to the elements, to the noise and potentially to dangers that am protected from inside of my home.”
Thank you again for everyone who took part in the challenge this year. For those who were asking what else you could do, here are some things which would really help:
- Chat to your friends, family and colleagues about the Sleep-Out experience and tell them about the work we are doing.
- Use the StreetLink app to inform our Outreach team about someone you see sleeping rough so we can get there and help them.
- Become a regular donor. Donate just £1 a day (£30 a month) and help us run our services and emergency hostel and support the homeless and vulnerable men and women who come into our care. Our care isn’t just food and clothing, but mental health support, addiction recovery services and medical.
- Like us on Facebook and keep sharing our posts
- Become a volunteer at our hostel, in another of our services or at our events.
- Set up your own fundraiser in work, school, college or with your friends. We’re hoping to grow our community groups who would be keen to fundraise 3/4 times a year in their area. Please get in touch if this is of interest.
- Above all, stay passionate, kind and keen to make a difference. Because at the Sleep-Out you certainly did!
See you all at next year’s event.
All images by Jon Tonks
2019 March 12 by Verity Jones
Despite the initial rain during the evening of Friday 8 March, this year’s Big Bath Sleep-Out saw over 300 people taking part– making it the charity’s most participated Sleep-Out to date.
The event, which celebrated its 10th anniversary this year, welcomed families, friends, colleagues and community groups to Alice Park and saw them ditching their beds for one night to help raise much needed funds and awareness for Julian House and its increasing number of homelessness projects. Equipped with just sleeping bags, cardboard and plastic sheeting, over 300 people braved the mud and cold to help those forced to do it every night.
Organiser Cathy Adcock is delighted that so many people took part in the event, despite the rain during the afternoon and early evening leading up to the event.
“We are so pleased that so many people were willing to forego their normal creature comforts and warm homes for the night. Obviously sleeping out for one night doesn’t come close to the realities of homelessness. It does however give people the chance to empathise with those who are forced to sleep rough every night and those that took part certainly did just that. It was very heart-warming to see so many children who had encouraged their families to take part with them! Primary school children from WASPS, St Nicholas, Saltford Primary, Midsomer Norton Primary, Paulton Infants and Junior School, Bathwick St Mary, Castle Primary, Winsley Primary, Hayesfield Girls and St Saviour’s took part alongside older children and students from Kingswood School, Norton Hill, John Bentley School, Twerton’s Youth Group and Bath Spa University.
We also had some great groups from local businesses including colleagues from Stone King, Nationwide Bath, Metro Bank, Actual Experience and Pure Planet to name a few.”
So far the online donations are running at £40,000 which is outstanding – and there will be more donations coming throughout March. It would be fantastic if the event could raise over £50,000 for the charity’s 10th event.
“Thank you to everyone who took part and raised sponsorship and to everyone who made it happen. The team at Alice Park Café continued their support of the event by serving hot drinks and snacks and then serving very welcomed bacon rolls for the participants in the early hours of the morning. Special thanks also go to all the volunteers who helped on the night as well as Bath Boules Charitable Trust, Mines Leisure and Kennet Sign & Display.”
2019 January 10 by Verity Jones
Are you seeking to challenge yourself this year? Are you looking for something you can get your friends involved in? Then sign up to Julian House’s 10th Big Bath Sleep-Out.
We’re challenging you, your family, friends and work colleagues to ditch the comfort of your bed and sleep out for just one night under the stars, on Friday 8 March 2019. In doing so, you’ll help raise vital funds and make an incredible difference to those forced to sleep out every night.
Giving up just one night really could transform the lives of others.
So get your family, friends and work colleagues together and join us and hundreds of others on Friday 8th March 2019 in Alice Park for the 10th Big Bath Sleep-Out.
Event organiser, Cathy Adcock, says: “Of course, no-one is under any illusion that spending one cold night in Alice Park could possibly come close to the stark reality of being homeless and sleeping on the streets. People taking part in the Big Bath Sleep-Out may be cold and a little wet – one year we even had snow! However, the next morning people taking part can go home, have a warm bath, a cooked breakfast, chat to family and friends about their experience or just catch up on lost sleep. The big difference for people who are forced to sleep rough is that they don’t have that option.
The event has proven popular with: families; groups of friends and work colleagues; and children as young as four taking part. We’ve also welcomed large teams from Scout and Guide groups, organisations and companies – who’ve rallied together to take on the challenge. Supporting the Sleep-Out gives members of the public the chance to empathise with those who are forced to sleep on the streets and raise sponsorship to help Julian House support them – not just changing lives – but often saving lives.”
Find out more about the event here.
2018 December 10 by Verity Jones
After nearly 30 years of drug abuse Phil turned his life around – now he has a full-time job at Julian House and says every day is a reminder of how far he’s come.
“My parents divorced when I was 13. I started hanging out with the wrong crowd, drinking and smoking dope. Before I knew it, things got out of control and I’d moved on to heroin and crack cocaine.”
The first of Phil’s three sons was born when he was just 19. “I was barely more than a child myself. I lived a double life for years; holding down jobs as a painter/decorator to support my family – in between spells in prison for burglary, theft, fighting and dealing to support my drug habit.”
In 2012 Phil was locked up for another four years – and he finally decided enough’s enough. “I was sick of going to prison. Sick of being estranged from everyone I cared about.” Especially his boys who he’d not seen for years. “So I enrolled in a drug free wing. It was easy to stay clean in prison – but I knew the test would come when I was back on the street.”
And that’s when Julian House stepped in; Phil applied to See Change – one of our addiction recovery houses. “I thought I’d give myself a fighting chance, and I haven’t looked back. See Change is a safe environment – from 1-2-1 counselling sessions, to peer support groups, a dedicated keyworker to encouragement on tap – I can’t blow their trumpet enough.”
After a few months Phil started volunteering, which turned into a part time position with a local social enterprise. “I wanted to get back on my feet – buy a car so I could start rebuilding my relationship with my family in Cambridge.” And when Julian House offered him a full-time position as a maintenance man he jumped at the chance.
“I really like the ethos of working for a charity, and the variety of what I do on a day to day basis; One week I can be fitting a new kitchen, gardening the next. But the best thing about my position at Julian House is the reminder of the life I don’t want to go back to.”
Until six years ago Phil hadn’t lived more than three consecutive days as an adult man without substance misuse. “Drugs cuddled me when I was down, and celebrated with me when I was up. I thought I couldn’t cope without them. What I didn’t realise back then is that I was just existing…. today I live.”
Phil admits he has lots of regrets, but after years of not feeling at home in his six-foot skin he’s finally happy. “I just take it one day at a time, talk to people rather than trying to undo all the knots myself, and don’t look for escapism anymore. I’m grateful for everything I have – job, house, car, partner, kids, grandkids.”
“And now when people ask me to tell them about myself, I’m not Phil the ex-criminal, or Phil or ex-drug addict anymore – I’m just Phil.
2018 December 6 by Verity Jones
Before we met Ben he was living with his mother but unfortunately their relationship broke down due to his mental health issues and behaviour. He was diagnosed with Rage Disorder after becoming verbally aggressive and breaking objects in her home. The police had been called after incidents leading to him receiving a restraining order and having to attend probation. He could not live at the family home and became homeless.
Ben sofa surfed with friends and family, and even stayed with his mother against the restraining order which put him at risk of prosecution, until his options ran out. He got in contact with his father which led him to leaving his county and moving to Exeter. However, he had no options of having a safe place to stay and was at serious risk of becoming street homeless. Ben had started to become low of mood and was concerned his behaviour would become problematic.
After completing a risk assessment of Ben, we placed him with experienced hosts where he behaved and interacted with hosts well. Hosts stated they did not experience any of the diagnosis given to Ben as he was polite and conscientious. The feedback was important as it meant hosts with less experience and unsure about higher risk issues could host him, giving him more options of different hosts to stay with.
As time went on, we helped Ben apply for different supported accommodation but also had concerns about his mental health issues. Nightstop was able to give him a reference and show the diagnosis was in the context of his mother’s home. Before he could be accepted, his girlfriend from his original county came to Exeter and asked to stay with Nightstop. However, she was too high risk to stay with hosts and Ben choose to stay in a tent with her as felt he needed to look after her.
Ben continued to engage with Nightstop staff and he could still stay with hosts in supported accommodation but chose to stay in the tent with his girlfriend.
He turned up one morning with cuts and bruises after being bitten and hit with a hammer after an argument with his girlfriend. We were able to place him with a host that night and support him to engage with the police whist charges were being pressed. Ben was extremely vulnerable with hosts able to provide emotional support and appropriate advice.
Ben eventually moved into temporary accommodation provided by the council. However, this only lasted until the threat of violence ended, his ex-girlfriend left the area, and Ben sofa surfed with a friend until he came back to Nightstop.
He applied to move into the supported housing and was accepted, Ben has lived in the flat since July 18 and engaged with staff well. He has completed the Outcome Star, a coaching tool that helps young people recognise issues in a structured method. He has applied for a music production course and wants to start his old hobbies again. Also, Ben has supported Nightstop at promotional events and he stated could never have been able to talk to people he did not know and felt staying with people he did not know helped his confidence.
Find out more about Nightstop here.
2018 November 21 by Verity Jones
Over the winter months Julian House will be providing 20 extra bed spaces for rough sleepers.
Extra Government funding has allowed Julian House to provide 20 extra bed spaces during the most difficult period of the year for rough sleepers. These will be based in the basement of Manvers St Baptist Church – next door to the existing Julian House Hostel.
The SafeSleep facility will open from 8pm every evening and clients will be able to stay until 9.30 the next morning. After then they will be able to access the day centre next door.
Julian House Operations Director, Roanne Wootten, is delighted that the charity will be able to provide this extra capacity: “Living on the streets is tough and dangerous, particularly over the winter months. Although our outreach team does a terrific job in connecting with rough sleepers it is much easier to do identify needs and support them if they are inside and away from the rigours of the street. We are hopeful that over the coming months we’ll be able to move more people on into some sort of settled accommodation.
It is good that the Government has recognised the issue and listened to the concerns of organisations across the country, including Julian House. We are also indebted to our long-time supporters, Manvers St Baptist Church, for making SafeSleep happen.”
2018 November 5 by Verity Jones
The Julian House Auction of Promises was held on Thursday 1st November and was a great success. The event started with canapes from The Mint Rooms and music by Ben Cipolla as well as a raffle.
The auction itself raised an impressive £30,000 with lots including holidays, experiences and meals out. The funds raised will go towards providing vital services for our clients.
Thank you very much to everyone who attended, donated lots, volunteered and supported the event.
2018 October 18 by Verity Jones
Staff from a Chippenham firm are taking on the world’s longest one-day road cycling event in support of Julian House.
The Red Bull Time Laps event takes place on 27/28 October – a challenge which will be even tougher than normal because of the winter clock change which happens that weekend. This means that the 24 hour challenge will actually run for 25 hours!
The team from leading aircraft components firm, Executive Jet Support, have been training hard over the past few months – building up their stamina and trying to replicate the physical and mental stretch that this unique event puts on participants. Having made the decision to take part the team thought that it made sense to try and support a charity on the back of their efforts.
Cecil Weir is the charity’s Fundraising and PR Director – “Over the years I have seen some amazing endeavours in support of our work but this has to be one of the most challenging. In addition to the obvious physical demands of taking part the fatigue of competing over a 24 hour period makes this really tough. We really appreciate and respect their commitment.
In addition of to the financial benefit of what they are doing, almost of equal value is the increased awareness that they’ll generate. Promoting to a wider audience that homelessness isn’t a lifestyle of choice and that positive change isn’t just possible it’s a daily reality across much of what we do.”
Executive Jet Support is a world leading provider of commercial aircraft, engines and airframe components to almost 200 operators in over 40 countries across the globe.
You can support the EJS team here.
2018 October 4 by Verity Jones
Huge thanks to Bristol Society of Magic for kindly staging an evening of magic and illusion on Thursday 11th October in aid of See Change/Julian House.
2018 September 24 by Verity Jones
Congratulations and thank you to all the walkers who braved the rain and mud and took part in the Circuit of Bath Walk on Sun 23rd. Despite the rain it was great to see such amazing spirit and smiley faces (especially when the sun came out).
Thank you and also to all the wonderful volunteers, Thermae Bath Spa and Bathscape Walking Festival for making the day such a great success.
Check out our Twitter and Facebook page for more photos – winners of the photo competition to be announced shortly.
2018 September 24 by Verity Jones
This years Bath Firework display, organised by the Rotary Club of Bath will be held at the recreation ground on Saturday 3rd November.
Julian House, alongside Bath City Farm, are this years chosen charities to benefit from the spectacular event. You can buy tickets here, or from one of the outlets listed below.
2018 August 28 by Verity Jones
Tuesday 11th September 4pm -7pm
Are you interested in opportunities to work or volunteer in supporting people who are experiencing homelessness or rough sleeping?
BCHA and Julian House are jointly developing exciting new projects and initiatives for people who are homeless in Exeter.
Experience of this type of work is not essential but a smile, enthusiasm and a willingness to be flexible are!A variety of opportunities are available from volunteering and mentoring to sessional and full time work.
Please telephone 01392 258899 for further information, to book on, or just pop along on the night!
Colab Exeter, Wat Tyler House King William Street, Exeter, EX4 6PD
2018 June 26 by Verity Jones
Julian House Bike Workshop is really pleased to welcome Spokes the Minerva Owl to their nest for the summer.
Unfortunately there is no room for Spokes outside the Bath Bike Workshop, so Therme Bath Spa have kindly let him roost with them (where we are sure he enjoying a relaxing dip now and again.)
Spokes is being sponsored by Deloitte, and has been hand-painted by Bath’s own artist Perry Harris.
Minerva’s Owls is a major public art sculpture trail featuring a giant flock of 85 individually decorated, super-sized owl sculptures displayed across the city and surrounding region from 25 June–10 September 2018.
2018 June 25 by Verity Jones
We held an open day for our services in Basingstoke to celebrate the opening of our new office and to make organisations and clients aware of it’s location.
The day not only showed off the new space but reminded other organisations and clients in the area the services we provide. It was a great success with many people in attendance including the Mayor, Cllr Keating.
There was a Dr Bike stall present as this is a new service that we hope to bring to Basingstoke for the clients to benefit from, there was also an opportunity for current clients to showcase some of their artwork completed in our art therapy sessions.
2018 June 18 by Verity Jones
The Big Bike Revival is a UK wide series of events that aims to inspire people who own bikes, but who don’t cycle, to start riding.
We have got a range of events going on at our Bike Workshop that you can come and get involved in.
Big Bike Check
This is a series over events run over a few locations where you can pop in for a free bike check.
On the day we will carry out a free commuter check on your bike, provide information about the cycle to work scheme, give advice on getting back on the bike and we will even have Orbea and Katu demo bikes you can take for a quick spin!
Cyclists, commuters and anyone interested in riding a bike is invited to come and see us- you can leave your bike with us and we will text you when it is done!
21st June – Exeter University, Streatham Campus, outside the Library – 10am -3pm
23rd June – Exeter
Bike Workshop – 9am-10am
30th June – Bristol Bike Workshop – 10am-4pm
7th July – Exeter Bike Workshop 9am-10am
7th July – Trowbridge Bike Workshop 10am-4pm
10th July – RD&E hospital, outside the RILD building – 8am-3pm
14th July – Exeter Bike Workshop – 9am-10am
Beauty in the Bike
Julian House would like to invite you to join us on Tuesday 3rd July in Bedford Square in Princesshay between 8am – 3pm for our Beauty in the Bike event.
On the day we will carry out a free commuter check on your bike, provide information about the cycle to work scheme, give advice on getting back on the bike and we will even have Orbea and Katu demo bikes you can take for a quick spin!
Cyclists, commuters, in fact anyone interested in riding a bike is welcome to come and have a chat to find out more about the fantastic health benefits of cycling and the exciting work we do at Julian House. You can even leave your bike with us for a safety check and we will text you when it is done!
Ride Devon have all the information you need to cycle to work and the lovely network of cycling routes available in and around Exeter and further a field.
2018 February 8 by Verity Jones
We want to say a huge thanks to everyone who supported our best ever Christmas Appeal, which has been rounded off with an amazing gift.
Over the months of December and January we ran our annual Christmas Appeal – once again supported by the Bath Chronicle. The target for the campaign was an ambitious one, £120,000. Funds raised now help to ensure that we can operate our life changing and sometimes lifesaving services, throughout the year.
Monkton Combe School has supported Julian House for over 20 years and has risen to the challenge again by presenting an amazing donation of £2,107 – almost the final gift of the campaign. This impressive gift took the total raised to £138,830 – the highest amount ever raised for Julian House Christmas Appeal.
Cecil Weir is the charity’s Fundraising Director and has led the campaign for the past 17 years – “Every year the public and the wider community rally to support our work, particularly at this time of year. The harsh weather brings into sharp focus just how dreadful is for our clients to be homeless or at risk of becoming homeless.
Even though I have been organising it for some time it never ceases to humble me when I see the goodwill that is shown and the generosity. We had a 14 year old girl bake 500 cupcakes, herself, and raise £550 in the process. Winter fuel payments were forwarded to us because the donors thought that our clients needed it more than them. It is rather fitting that Monkton Combe School, who have supported us for over 20 years should make provide almost the final gift of the appeal which helped us to reach such an impressive total.”
The Monkton gift was raised at the school’s annual Christmas carol service in Bath Abbey and was one of many events which helped to support the charity’s campaign. Cecil Weir acknowledges the wider benefit that such events bring – “Although things have improved there are still awareness issues around homeless – both the scale of the problem and the complex issues which impact upon it. Every event that is organised and every article that is written helps to make people realise that it isn’t a lifestyle of choice and that with the right support we can really make a difference. To everyone who supported the campaign a huge thank you from everyone at Julian House and particularly our clients. Likewise to all our volunteers and not forgetting the Bath Chronicle.”
Julian House provides range of services to homeless and vulnerable individuals including: supported housing (general and specialised), domestic abuse services, social enterprises and an assertive outreach service. In all the charity operates 132 bed spaces. However, its direct access hostel provision remains one of the most important – providing as it does, very often, the first stage in the process of moving people off the street and reconnecting them back into their local community.
The charity’s work doesn’t stop now that the Christmas campaign is over. Over the course of this week the sharp drop in temperature has forced it to open up extra emergency bed spaces – offering rough sleepers respite from sub-zero conditions.