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Vinnie: Super-star Striker/Support Worker

This is part 1 of a series of interviews with Julian House staff and the Chief Executive, Peter Denning.

As one of the star players that helped Bath steal the Julian House Challenge Cup last week, I thought I’d start by asking Vinnie if he’d enjoyed the match in Keynsham:

“Yes it was a great match, with all that fighting Bristol talk I thought we were going to have a really hard time! It would be good next time to do something with even wider appeal, like Rounders.”

Vinnie’s job in the Supported Housing Team covers several areas:

“I facilitate the ‘Meaningful Occupation’ groups at the bike workshop and five a side football and support people across four properties in Bath – Ashley Terrace, Walcot Street, Claude Avenue and Peter House.”

Vinnie explained that potential clients are referred to the Supported Housing team through what is called Gateway and various partnering agencies such as Reach. Following an assessment a decision would be made fairly swiftly and if accepted this would then lead to accommodation in one of the several supported housing rooms available.

“I have assessed people in prison over a video link through the probation services, which has been interesting as it can lead to earlier parole dates if accepted into the Peter House service.”

I then asked Vinnie about what he enjoys about the job and what frustrations there are:

“The role can be frustrating when I would like to do more work involving the referral process for example.”

“I get a lot out of helping people to move on into their own accommodation and ensuring that they are not left in an empty shell but are supported in the furnishing of their new home. This is usually the most worrying part for clients along with utility bills, which we refer to Reach for on going support with.”

“It’s also good to see the benefits of MO, there are such positive outcomes like physical fitness and wellbeing through the five a side football, but also confidence, problem solving and a sense of worth through the bike workshop.”