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Trauma informed training on Housing Rights for Refugee and Migrant Women

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Event description
Build an awareness of and learn responses to how gender, trauma, housing and migrant journeys affect women in the UK.

About this Event

Baobab Women’s Project is one of 29 charity projects across England, working with women who are homeless or at risk of homelessness, to receive a grant. Almost 200 organisations applied for a portion of the £1.85 million pot.

Women’s homelessness is a significant national issue with many women having experienced violence and abuse contributing to their homelessness. Over 640 women sleep on our streets every night and thousands more do not have access to a safe or suitable home.

Homeless Link’s grants programme aims to help end women’s homelessness by building capacity for gender- and trauma-informed services and developing partnerships between homelessness and specialist women’s sector charities.

At Baobab, the funding is being used to employ a housing and women’s advocacy practitioner who will increase gender and trauma informed casework across the West Midlands for migrant and refugee women. We regularly see destitute women who have received a negative asylum decision, but have a need for protection, and those who have fled domestic violence and become undocumented. Recognised refugees are also evicted from their accommodations and face homelessness.

We deliver specialist casework, train and support volunteer advocates to improve practice with women who are homeless, or at risk of homelessness. We have created a training package for external organisations and build partnerships with voluntary and statutory agencies. Our impact aims to build practical solutions for homeless women, improve our teams advocacy capability, and expand gender and trauma informed knowledge across homelessness and specialist womens organisations.

Training outline:

We think about what gender is and what it means to develop services for women. We look at trauma informed care - thinking about brain chemistry, then go on to think of complex trauma and how the experiences refugees and migrants face are traumatic. We look at the mental health continuum in relation to womens experiences. We discuss trauma informed approaches, promoting Eves mapping the maze model in terms of organisational ethos and a safe environment.

Then we go onto learn about women, migration and human rights - there's a game on borders and states thinking who would you let in? We give links and discuss international conventions, UK laws and Home Office guidance in relation to women's experiences. Considering the domestic legislation for migration / settlement, that gives rights to residence - housing, or not. The slide on UKVI operational guidance on gender issues and best practice of women who have suffered gender based violence should be treated.

The housing section covers adult and children's social service provision, asylum provision and the subcontractors, temporary accommodation and getting permenant council housing. There are mainly casestudy examples that event attendees discuss in groups and then bring solutions back to the main session thinking about how to engage with trauma, gender, immigration and housing difficulties.

Throughout the day theres space to chat to participants and learn from the wealth of experience in the room and make new connections.

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