Penrose Synergy is Penrose’s newest service, launched last year in Luton. Despite only being opened for 6 months, we have recently accepted our 500th referral – a massive achievement!
Penrose opened the doors to a new Luton based service, ‘Synergy’, on the 2nd July 2012. Synergy offers Floating Support to 300 Luton based clients, providing generic and complex needs, client-led support. Synergy also provides support to a further 30 individuals under the local Integrated Offender Management service.
The focus at Synergy is on diversity, shared experience and initiative. In using this ethos we aim to create an atmosphere of productivity, innovation and involvement. Through partnership with a wide range of local agencies, we are working to create safer and more inclusive communities.
Floating Support is a ‘peripatetic’ service – meaning that it is available to individuals at a location that works for them. The ‘floating’ element of the support refers to the flexibility of the service – enabling support levels to increase when needed, and ‘float off’ once objectives have been met, and enhanced independence has been achieved.
The support offered by Synergy is client-led and supports individuals with varying levels of need, in their own accommodation. This support is enhanced by our community resource centre at Victoria House, which is open to all of our clients, partner agencies, families and carer’s.
The Community Resource Centre brings people together and offers access to additional support, groups, training and activities. These programmes are person centred, flexible and tailored to individual need. This includes:
- Support to improve health and well-being
- Support in recovery from enduring or recurring mental illness
- Support to address offending behaviour
- Support to address alcohol or substance use issues
- Family & Carer support
- Work related training
- Budgeting, benefits and life skills
- Tenancy sustainment, Housing Advice and Accommodation Brokerage
- Holistic and Alternative therapies
- Group work programmes.
For more information, or to support our work with vulnerable people in any way – please contact Kelly Hallett on 0207 6974225.
This week Penrose are supporting the Ministry of Justices’ National Restorative Justice week. Penrose have been talking to our service users about RJ, and how they would feel about taking part in RJ schemes.
What is restorative justice?
Restorative justice (RJ) is the process of bringing together those harmed by crime or conflict with those responsible for the harm, to find a positive way forward. In criminal justice, restorative processes give victims the chance to:
- Tell offenders the real impact of their crime.
- Get answers to their questions.
- Get an apology.
Restorative justice holds offenders to account for what they have done. It helps them understand the real impact, take responsibility, and make amends. It is not a soft option and is used in addition to offenders being sentenced in the normal way.
RJ can be delivered through:
- A restorative group conference, involving a facilitator, the offender and victim
and their supporters (usually family members).
- A community conference, involving members of the community affected by
the crime or conflict.
- Contact between victim and offender through a mediator/facilitator, to discuss
- Indirect communication via telephone or video conferencing, written
correspondence or ‘shuttle mediation’ through the facilitator.
Why use restorative justice?
Ministry of Justice research has shown that:
- RJ is associated with a 14% reduction in the frequency of re-offending.
- 85% of victims that participated in RJ conferences were satisfied with the
- We therefore encourage practitioners to make victims and offenders aware of
restorative justice and how to access it – at whatever stage of the justice process.
Where to find more information:
For more information about restorative justice or to find registered practitioners visit:
THE ROAD TO RECOVERY
Penrose celebrates World Mental Health Day with our own Torch Relay
Penrose is a unique organisation that supports vulnerable people in and around London and Luton including those suffering from mental health issues. To celebrate World Mental Health Day on 10th October, staff and service users joined forces to put on an epic event that linked their eight main services in a giant, Olympics-inspired Torch Relay.
The Penrose Torch Relay involved 40 service users, staff and friends of Penrose, who walked, ran or cycled a total of 63 miles in eight stages over three days, carrying and passing on home-made torches. The Relay was divided into two marathon journeys, both finishing at Penrose’s Islington Head Office. The first one started in Luton and went via Harrow and Holloway, and the second started in Lewisham and wound its way through Lambeth before crossing the river. When the torches reached Head Office, Penrose held a special event with food, speeches and music. Penrose’s service users produce a regular newsletter that happens to be called the Penrose Torch – very fitting with the olympic theme!
The first stage, at 30 miles, linked Synergy, Penrose’s new support service in Luton to its long-established project in Harrow on 8th October. A team of three staff, including Synergy team manager Hilary Mills-Williams cycled the challenging distance in the rain.
Better weather followed for the next day’s stages, including a 16-mile walk and run from Harrow to Penrose’s hostel in Holloway, carried out by three different teams.
Meanwhile a large team from Penrose Jigsaw, a Lewisham-based accommodation service offering intensive mental health support, walked five miles to their partner service, Penrose Focus, in Lambeth.
On World Mental Health Day itself, the final journeys took place, with the last two teams meeting at Penrose’s Head Office in Holloway Road, London, in time for some well-deserved refreshments and some celebratory speeches.
Penrose CEO, Gill Arukpe said: “at Penrose our service users tell us that recovery from mental ill-health is a long and challenging journey. The Torch Relay was a great way of celebrating their commitment and hard work. We also know that exercise can help all of us with our mental as well as physical health. Penrose has always celebrated World Mental Health Day in a big way and are delighted to have done something extra special this year.”
If you would like to make a donation to Penrose to support the work that we do with vulnerable people across London and Luton, then please do so here www.virginmoneygiving.com/charities/penrose Any donations are always gratefully received!
Part of the work we do in Penrose is to ensure that our Service Users get opportunities to constantly challenge themselves in positive ways and for them to try new things to build up their confidence and self-esteem.
Many of the people we support in Penrose had little opportunity to gain these skills in their childhood. Many have spent the majority of their lives in hospital, young offender services and prison. Lack of positive thinking and drive has led many of them into crime.
In Penrose the way we work with individuals has enabled us to have a recidivism rate of just 7% which is well below the national average!
One such way is to challenge 8 people in Penrose to do the Three Peak Challenge!
The Three Peaks Challenge is an attempt to climb the three highest peaks in the UK in ‘one go’ within 24 hours.
These peaks are Ben Nevis, Scafell Pike and Snowdon.
The brave eight who have never tried such a feat before are currently carrying our preparation to improve their fitness level. They are walking every day and started on the first day to walk from half way down Holloway Rd to London Bridge which took just over an hour. Each one of them is also doing a range of fundraising activities in order to pay for the cost of completing this physical and emotional challenge.
All the money raised above the cost for competing will be going to Penrose. We intend to use the money the 8 manage to fundraise to develop volunteer opportunities in the community so that our service users can pay back something to the communities they live in and also pre employment programmes to increase their chance of becoming economically independent.
If you would care to sponsor one of the Penrose 8 please feel free to do so by contacting our fundraising team at email@example.com
Gill Arukpe, Chief Executive of Penrose