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The Shelter Trust - Aztec House

"Everyone Needs Shelter"

The Shelter Trust was established over 25 years ago and is now the leading provider of accommodation and support services for the homeless community in Jersey.

The Trust provides accommodation, food, support / encouragement for around 100 people per night at four sites in and around the town area.

Last year, the Trust supported more than 500 individuals.

The age range of Shelter Trust service is from 16-74.  In recent years, the Trust has seen a big increase in the number of young people (under 25) becoming homeless.

Currently, around 30 per cent of our service users are aged between 16 and 25 years and, whereas historically around one in ten of the local homeless community were female, the number of young female service users in the Trust is more like two or three in ten. 

Breakfast, lunch, dinner and supper are provided for service users at three of the sites (the fourth site is self-catering).  This means, Trust more than 100,000 meals per year.

The reasons why an individual becomes homeless are many, nonetheless, several reasons as cited often enough by homeless people to bear repetition here; unemployment, substance misuse, mental health difficulties, physical health difficulties, returning to the community from prison, relationship breakdown and sometimes there is a lack of appropriate, affordable accommodation.

Nobody sets out to be or to remain homeless.  The main aim of the Trust is to accommodate homeless people for as short a time as is practically possible before their return to mainstream accommodation and living.

'Rough sleeping' used to be a massive problem with 20-30 people a night sleeping in car parks and other venues. The work of the Trust and the Jersey Homeless Outreach Group ('JHOG'), has changed the situation completely to an odd person occasionally 'sleeping rough'.

Aztec House

Aztec House provides single accommodation for both males and females who have been, or are at risk of being homeless for longer periods.

Typically residents would have experienced long periods of homelessness ,including rough sleeping, and will have complex health, addiction or mental health needs.

Aztec House forms part of a complex of buildings which also house our emergency accommodation and the Drunk & Incapable Unit. A building adjacent to our emergency facility was purchased with a donation from the J.N Sommer Charitable Trust and opened in October 2004.

The buildings within the complex effectively operate as one building now, which is known as Aztec House.

Purpose: To provide safe, high-support, longer-term accommodation for homeless adults.

Accommodation: 22 persons (single occupancy). Staff on duty 24hrs. Dining, bathroom and laundry facilities are shared. There are limited facilities for disabled residents. There is an accommodation charge.

Services: Assessment, key working, advocacy, supported access to services (housing, health, drug and alcohol, counselling, mental health, community bank), employment and training advice, meals, laundry.

Access: Referral by individual or agency.

Prior to the opening of Aztec House, many of the residents would have lived between emergency accommodation (claiming a bed by the night) and rough sleeping; some for many years. Aztec House allowed Shelter to provide some security to some extremely vulnerable men and women.

Residents have their own rooms for as long as they need them.  They have their own keys and are encouraged to individualise their rooms as they please.  The rooms are furnished and have televisions, kettles and safes.

Meals are provided in the communal dining room, and residents have the use of two communal loung areas, which have televisions.

A computer with internet access is available to assist with work and flat hunting.

Residents have dedicated keyworkers with whom they work to address their support needs. Keyworkers will always promote moving on to more suitable accommodation where that is an achievable option.

THE GARDEN 

The residents have use of the courtyard garden,which with donated plants and furniture and by their own labour, they have created a beautiful and peaceful place to relax and let the worries of the world pass by.

The garden project was organised as part of our ‘meaningful activities’ programme where staff and residents get together and organise activities that are both meaningful and hopefully enjoyable.

The courtyard garden is a great addition to our facilities at Aztec House.

Day Facilities

Shelter offers Day facilities to rough sleepers and others who need them. Aztec House operates an open door policy, and anyone can drop in for a chat and a cup of tea, or for advice about a specific problem. Shower facilities, meals and laundry are all available to non-residents who are in need.

Purpose: To provide support to non-Shelter residents who are homeless, or otherwise socially excluded.

Services: Advice, advocacy, meals, laundry & support in accessing other services (benefits, health, drug and alcohol, counselling, mental health, community bank).

Access: Open.

Many individuals who do not stay with Shelter, call into Aztec House for advice and support or just for some company and a chat. Some of these people are ex-clients who pop in for a bit of company. Others have never been homeless and want advice about their accommodation or perhaps their benefits.

Rough sleepers may use Aztec House to safely store their bedding and belongings, to shower, launder their clothes and have a meal. They can use the phone to sort out appointments and use our address as a safe postal address. A private room is available for rough sleepers to meet health professionals.

Whatever the reason, visitors are welcome to drop in to Aztec House anytime between 9-00am and 9-00pm.

Visitors of other Trust projects are also welcome by arrangement.

As at the end of 2017, the day facilities service was used by 126 individuals.

Who to contact

Contact Name
James Jackson
Contact Position
Project Manager Aztec House
Telephone
01534 730235
Website
www.shelter.org.je

Where to go

Name
Emergency Shelter / Outreach Team
Address
Aztec House
37 Kensington Place
St Helier
Jersey
Postcode
JE2 3PA

Other Details

Availability

Referral required
Yes
Referral Details

Referral by individual or agency

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