VHCS was set-up by Annys Darkwa, a winner of the 100 Most Unseen Powerful Women Who Change the World and an Ashoka fellow. Annys is now the organisation’s Managing Director and no-one knows better how vulnerable people can feel at that time of prison release. She said:
“People feel exposed on their release from prison. They are susceptible and at risk of being drawn back into their old ways of life. For many, it’s the only way of living they know. I know from personal experience that those first few hours are vital in reducing the risk of re-offending because you can soon become exposed to your old contacts and then you find yourself back in the offending trap.
The work we do is making a huge difference. We are doing great work with London Councils, as well as other organisations such as BITC and Community Payback (London). But there’s still much more we can do. We have completed a thorough evaluation of our work, proving our social impact – contact us if you want to know more about this.”
WORLD LEADERS IN SOCIAL INNOVATION
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In November 2017 Vision Housing was acquired by The Forward Trust.
a social business with charitable status that supports people to break the cycles of crime and addiction.
Vision Housing’s service offer is a complimentary addition to Forward’s existing substance misuse and employment services for ex-offenders and people in recovery from addiction. The staff from Vision will continue working from their office in Croydon until December, and will thereafter be based at Forward’s Head Office in Vauxhall.
Mike Trace Chief Executive of The Forward Trust said: ‘Vision Housing has established an innovative way of making private rented accommodation available to prisoners on the day of release. We know that safe accommodation is a key factor in helping to tackle re-offending and reducing the chance of someone in recovery relapsing. We are looking forward to developing that model to meet the needs of more of our beneficiaries in the coming months.’
Vision Housing Consultancy Services Limited is a company registered in England and Wales, Company Number 06266238, whose members’ liability is limited by guarantee. Vision Housing Consultancy Services Limited, also known as ‘Vision Housing’, is also a registered charity (reference number 1123522).
The Objectives of the charity and the powers of the Board of Trustees are set out in the Memorandum and Articles of Association as are the regulations concerning the appointment of new Trustees.
Vision Housing helps provide housing and on-going support to ex-offenders prior to and on release from prison. We also work with other vulnerable, homeless people. Our service users are at extremely vulnerable stages of their lives and we give them a tailored package of support which helps prevent them re-offending.
The Trustees confirm that they have complied with their duty under section 4 of the Charities Act 2006 to have due regard to the Charity Commission’s general guidance on public benefit.
Our Board of Trustees: Vision Housing Board of Trustees is “comprised of senior managers from the private, public and third sectors” New trustees serve a probationary period where they are made aware of the general requirements of trustees, as set out by the Charities Commission, and spend time with the operational team to understand the work load and the daily challenges and opportunities staff are presented with.
Staff & Volunteers: Vision Housing continues to provide work placements for volunteers from a wide range of backgrounds, with an emphasis on providing opportunities to ex-offenders. Vision Housing also continues to emphasise employing ex-offenders (usually service users) in full time salaried positions within the organisation, providing a more nuanced understanding and comprehensive service of support to recently released clients than would be possible otherwise.