An exhibition of evocative images taken by a group of women affected by homelessness has opened in Worthing this Spring.
The exhibition is the result of several month’s partnership working from Turning Tides, Safe in Sussex and the Brighton Women’s Centre. The project is part of the wider initiative to raise the profile of the challenges faced by women experiencing homelessness funded by Homeless Link.
Sharing these poignant photos and expressions with the wider public is fundamental to imparting what it has been like for women experiencing homelessness where we live. As one stark statement emphasizes, “If I’m not of any worth, why would I bother getting better?”.
Turning Tides’ Community Hub in Worthing has never experienced anything like the increasing demand for support received over the last year. Enquiries have been flooding in from concerned local people who have nowhere else to turn.
Turning Tides were delighted to be announced the winners of the Community Award at the inaugural Virtual Business Awards Sussex in December 2020.
After an incredibly challenging year, with a near doubling in the number of individuals accessing their services due to the pandemic, the news brought a real moment of positivity, bringing 2020 to conclusion on an unexpectedly high note.
In a break from traditional ceremonies, the awards evening – which celebrates and recognises business achievements across Sussex – was hosted virtually, bringing together business owners, directors and teams remotely from the comfort of their sofas to network and honour each other’s accomplishments.
Launched on 1st February, Turning Tides were delighted by the success of the new style virtual event which saw over 102 competition entries across the four categories and over 1,500 public votes, with the event reaching almost 9,000 people. Everyone, from babies to pets, neighbours to family, colleagues to congregations were invited to enter the Woolly Hat themed social media photo competition – with some awesome prizes up for grabs!
This month sees us launch our Christmas Appeal – in response to a looming crisis in our community as homelessness escalates this winter. Covid is taking a rising number of jobs and livelihoods, leaving local men and women without a home – just as the harsh winter months and a second wave of the pandemic approach.For those living on the streets, it is hard enough to find food, and stay warm and dry. But Christmas can bring heartache too – it highlights what is missing from a person’s life: family, food, safety, happiness.
At Turning Tides, we are determined that Christmas will not be cancelled. Caring is never cancelled and we want these men and women to know they are not alone. 90% of the people we support are local people – they are our neighbours – and we’d like to show them that their local community cares.
When you live on the streets, you just can’t see how you are going to do anything else with your life. It takes everything out of you to just survive and you lose hope of achieving anything else. Gradually, depression, despair and embarrassment took hold and as my circle of friends decreased, I had no one to turn to. For five long years, I simply survived.
This year brings significant hope for homeless men and women in Littlehampton as local homeless charity, Turning Tides, prepares to open a newly developed drop in Community Hub later this summer. For the first time, the Hub will also be supported by six new bedrooms offering a much needed lifeline for people who are homeless or sleeping rough.
We can confirm that all of the homeless men and women who were staying in the Chatsworth Hotel in Worthing, West Sussex, have now been offered alternative accommodation. We have managed to absorb 16 of the 54 Chatsworth residents into our own projects, which places our services and staff under continued and significant pressure.
We run 21 properties supporting some 200 homeless people. On top of this, a new intake of homeless men and women are being temporarily housed in hotels and B&Bs to protect them from Covid-19. These numbers are growing all the time – there is more call than ever for our support services.
As the largest provider of homeless services for single people in West Sussex we are seeing huge changes to the homelessness sector as a result of Covid 19. Here at Turning Tides our staff and services are stretched to the limit as we navigate significantly increased need for our support alongside the cancellation of many of our fundraising events and activities.
Kindness and solidarity and good old-fashioned community spirit are so precious at the moment. We are continually uplifted by the generous words and actions of our supporters. We hope that the public will enter into the spirit of #UnselfieMay and share, in their own words, messages of support so that we can pass those messages on to the people who most need to hear them.
These are unprecedented and challenging times, for everyone. At Turning Tides we are adapting to face the challenge of Covid-19. This charity exists to protect and support some of the most vulnerable in our community, so we are keenly aware of the impact Covid-19 could have on them. We provide a lifeline to people whose health will have been compromised through trauma, rough sleeping, poverty and much more besides.