St George’s Crypt, a Leeds based homeless charity, have launched their forward thinking accommodation service, Regent Lodge, aiming to solve issues around alcohol dependency in a homeless population through tailored support in an independent setting.

The opening ceremony brought together benefactors from across the city, from local business leaders, private individuals, the council and NHS. The hope is to reinforce the vision of the project and highlight how it fits in with the client journey that the Crypt have developed in conjunction with service users and partners.

Councillor Debra Coupar, Deputy Leader of Leeds City Council, conducted the ceremony and there was a tour of the facilities which described the breadth of support on offer and the overarching, long-term, rehabilitative goal of the project.

Regent Lodge provides 14 self-contained studio flats for residents with alcohol dependency issues. The scheme has been built at a cost of £1.9m by Galliford Try (Yorkshire).

Chris Wilson, head of client services at St George’s Crypt, said, “we understand the needs of this particularly vulnerable client group – people with long-term alcohol dependency issues need tailored support, love, care, compassion and chances. They need a stable foundation and to feel included.

“This is a state of the art building where they will feel valued, supported to make positive life choices, equipped with the tools they need to reintegrate with their community and to succeed. We can’t thank the city and our supporters enough to have joined us on this journey, and this is only the first step on our path to give Leeds citizens a watertight safety net.”

Regent Lodge, built on the site of the Crypt’s former wet hostel, Regent Terrace, looks to put into practice a number of emerging theories around recovery from alcohol dependency, community-based service provision and engagement. Building on successes delivering a range of services direct to their clients, the Crypt has developed this innovative model that will look to incorporate and extend support. The vision is to arm those with long-term severe alcohol issues with the skills and confidence to break the cycle of dependency, re-engage with their communities and develop work readiness skills to become fully independent.

Developed with close to a century of experience in delivering a homeless support service, close links with local council and NHS services, academic support and rigour through local university led research and development, St George’s Crypt is well placed to deliver a service that looks to change how Leeds as a city engages with some of its most hard to reach individuals.

Chris Fields, CEO of St George’s Crypt, said “Moving towards a more inclusive, person centred model, working with clients to ensure the service they get is fit for purpose and aimed at their individual needs will, we hope, give them a steady foundation to move away from a destabilising past; at the end of the day we want people alcohol free and productive members of the community and this project will go a long way to achieving that.”


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