Our fifth Together for Sutton (TfS) Information Network was held on 4th December 2023, at HMP High Down Conference Centre, and we were pleased to see over 90 guests on the day, quite literally a sell-out event!

TfS Housing Information Network 4 December 2023

Opening the session, we had Steve Tucker, Sutton Housing Partnership CEO, talking about the current housing situation amidst the cost-of-living crisis, followed by presentations from Sophie Flatt and Stephen Daniels, Encompass Housing, around the risks of people becoming homeless.

Steve Tucker, Sutton Housing Partnership CEO

Steve Tucker,  Sutton Housing Partnership CEO.

Sophie Flatt, Encompass LATC 

Sophie Flatt, Encompass LATC.

Our Interview with Andy Fulker, Sutton Night Watch Chief Executive Director, highlighted the reality for some on the streets and/or sofa surfing, with one of their amazing volunteers, Jason Cumber, telling us of his lived experiences. I think I speak for everyone when I say it was truly an honour to hear this positive, success story, which gave us all hope and something to work towards when working with residents facing similar situations.

Andy Fulker, Sutton Night Watch

An interview with Andy Fulker, Sutton Night Watch Chief Executive Director.

Our very own Steve Triner, Citizens Advice Sutton CEO, then talked to us about his observations of the environment with some thoughts around practical housing support available, and closing the event, Richard Jackman, HMP High Down, opened up the question around supporting those resettling in our borough. Another big “Thank You” to all of our Guest Speakers, you were all on point and helped everyone to focus on how we can move forwards positively, together.

Steve Triner, Citizens Advice Sutton CEO

Steve Triner, Citizens Advice Sutton CEO.

Richard Jackman, HMP High Down

Richard Jackman, HMP High Down, Resettlement.

In this day and age, the thought of people being homeless is hard to even comprehend, particularly at this time of year when the weather is so cold and relentlessly harsh. One would hope that with all of our local services available, that our residents of Sutton remain safely under a roof, warm and fed. But sadly, we know that this is not the reality, and with increasing costs, we are seeing a higher number of people at risk of homelessness in our borough, and services stretched with the support they can offer.

As with everything, there is no magical wand to make the situation better, but together, if we continue to work collaboratively, sharing best practices and joining up our projects, we hope to ease such issues and help those around us who are in real strife.

Many thanks to our amazing and inspiring guest speakers, the message around collaborative working across each and everyone of us came across very strongly at this event, and without this approach, it is going to become increasingly more difficult to help our residents of Sutton who are more than often experiencing money issues, ultimately affecting their housing. 

Your feedback is really important in shaping future events, so please can I ask all of you who attended to complete this very short survey for me. It literally takes three minutes. You can find the survey here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/QMBFZLT thank you in advance.

As always, we look forward to seeing you at the next event, currently bookmarked for 11th March 2024.

TfS would like to take this opportunity to wish you all a peaceful and restful Christmas, and here is to a better, safer New Year for all.