Bristol City Council is updating its mental health floating support services to better meet the needs of people now and in the future. Floating support services provide housing related support to individuals in their own home. This support focuses on enabling individuals to develop independent living skills. This can include anything from helping service users to manage their finances and benefit claims to helping them maintain their home.
Bristol City Council has been funding a number of different preventative floating support services for over a decade and this is the latest step forward.
Following a review of the council's mental health services, it was evident that the current model needed to be updated to address the demands of the service users.
The new and more comprehensive service will offer flexible support across the city; focused on enabling individuals to reach positive outcomes and objectives on their own terms. Service users will benefit from support which helps them to maintain their independence whilst also improving their mental well being.
This new model will also be better equipped to deal with a wider range of issues. This means that vulnerable people can rely on this service to be their first point of call for any extra help they might require. This service will be provided by Places for People, St Mungos Broadway and Missing Link.
Cllr Brenda Massey, Assistant Mayor for People said: "I am happy to see that this service is adjusting for the future. Mental health is an issue that affects a large proportion of our society and yet is often misunderstood. We need to make sure that we are offering our service users the best possible care whilst still helping them to maintain their independence. I am hopeful that these changes will mean that Bristol can continue to help these vulnerable people in to the future."
Adam Rees, St Mungo's Broadway Regional Director for Bristol and the South West, said: "We know people want to live as independently as possible in their own homes but can sometimes need specialist support to do so. That's where floating support can have real impact and we're very pleased to be working alongside partners to deliver this service. It also links in with other health and homelessness services we manage in the city, including hostels for people who are homeless, places providing mental health crisis support, and centres where we help people to learn new skills and move into training or work."
Becky Silvester, Services Manager for Places for People, said: "This is an exciting opportunity for Places for People to develop our work within Bristol City and provide support to local people. As an experienced provider of services, we will be working with 116 customers to develop independence, resilience and stability. The service will offer one-to-one and group support, and working closely with specialist agencies the service will develop opportunities for peer mentoring, volunteering and increase opportunities for training and education."
Carol Metters MBE, Chief Executive of Missing Link, said: "We are delighted that Bristol City Council has commissioned dedicated services for women as part of this provision. Women tell us how important a women only space is in helping them to build their independence and recover."
The new service is due to commence from the 1 April 2015. For more information head to the Bristol City Council webpage.
In order to be eligible for support, individuals need to meet the eligibility criteria. Access can be found via the housing support register. More information on the eligibility criteria and how to access the services can also be found on the Bristol City Council website.