Client Profile: June Glancy – Starter Packs Inverclyde

Starter Packs Inverclyde provide basic packs of household items to people who are starting their first tenancy after a period of homelessness. CLS supported the organisation’s bid for the first round of the  Big Lottery’s Support and Connect fund and we were successful at securing £93,780.

We asked June Glancy, the organisation’s co-ordinator to tell us more about the work they do and why they do it:

What is your role in the group/organisation?
As my role as co-ordinator, I manage the project’s overall, the day to day activities, volunteers and soon to be office assistant. I also importantly network with organisations and support agencies, which increases links, joined up working, creates stronger working relationships and and raises awareness of the work we do at Starter Packs Inverclyde.

Starter Packs Inverclyde team

June Glancy, the Starter Packs Inverclyde Co-ordinator (second from left), Duncan McNeil, MSP for Greenock & Inverclyde (second from right) and the rest of the team

What does your organisation do?
We provide practical help to families and individuals moving from homelessness into a tenancy by providing basic household items, crockery, pots, utensils, bedding, towels, hygiene and cleaning materials. Some items are good quality second-hand goods that are donated. Others are purchased new.

What are your group’s/organisation’s aims?
We provide practical assistance in the setting up of a home through the provision of a Starter Pack and develop new initiatives which enhance feelings of well-being and self-worth; we may also assist in the sustaining of a tenancy.

Why did you join (or set up) the group/organisation?
Starter Packs Inverclyde was set up in 2002 in partnership with Inverclyde Council, Scottish Churches Housing Action and Inverclyde Churches Together, in light of the provisions in the Housing Act (Scotland) 2001 requiring local authorities to develop a new Homelessness Strategy.

What is the greatest achievement of your group/organisation?
Securing a 21 month grant from The Big Lottery’s Support and Connect fund, which covers the majority of our larger costs and money for wages to employ an additional part-time member of staff.

What are the biggest challenges your group/organisation has faced?
In May 2012 we moved out of Belville Street flats into a rented a property owned by Inverclyde Council and were given notice 6 months later. We struggled to find alternative accommodation and in the end it was agreed we take on a commercial lease. We would have struggled to exist and for how long, I don’t know, due to the added costs associated with this lease had we not secured the Support and Connect funding.

If you were given £10,000 for your group/organisation, what would you do with it?
Purchase additional items to enhance the Starter Packs, i.e. iron/iron board, sandwich toaster, or putting together and printing of a cook book full of healthy, affordable recipes.

What are your hopes for the future of the group/organisation?
Security of having long term funding, or there was no need for our service as there was no homelessness or families struggling to have a basic standard of living.

How did your relationship with Community Links Scotland develop?
CLS work with local housing associations active within the Inverclyde area and who as part of their regeneration plans identify projects that include helping to enhance the health and well being of those living in hardship. CLS working with Oak Tree Housing Association was appointed two years ago to work with Starter Packs Inverclyde in the aim to help us sustain the project over the longer term.

How does Community Links Scotland help your group/organisation?
CLS work in partnership with Starter Packs Inverclyde to help identify what is required to sustain the project, advise on the sources of grants available that we can apply to, the type of information required that will enable us to compile the application and monitoring and reports.

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