Tinteán Housing Association

Posted on 14 Oct 2021

Tinteán Housing Association provides accommodation with support to women and families experiencing homelessness in Waterford City and County.

Member Q&A

What is your goal? 

Our Mission is to provide accommodation with support, in a safe environment, to women and families who present as homeless; with the objective being to support them to move on to, and sustain, independent living.  We will endeavor to achieve this through a philosophy and value base which promotes respect, dignity, partnership, non-judgemental attitude, understanding and empowerment.    

How have you been working towards it? 

We provide a wraparound service to women and families using our accommodation, with visiting onsite support from Addiction, Mental Health, and Disability services. Through continued relationship building with these agencies, we strive to strengthen and grow the inter-agency working into our ethos.  This will enhance the standard of care to service users within our service. Through the consistency of the Care and Case Management approach, including multi agency reviews, and key working, the provision of information in relation to relevant support services and by supporting residents to access these services and advocating on behalf of individuals where required.  Support is also provided to enable those accommodated to progress to independent living. 

Our Project Workers have accessed training to provide this Case Management approach through HSE Social Inclusion.  Offering regular home visits, in conjunction with a multidisciplinary team to our service users. Ensure the coordination of care of service users as the Case Managers, supporting access to required services as identified in an expedient manner. Maintain the early identification of issues, and planning interventions at times when issues become chronic and enduring, to alleviate the continued use of emergency department admissions through identifying deterioration of an individual prior to the situation reaching crisis point. Through regularly carrying out home visits with members of shared care teams I.E. CMHN for Homeless, Substance misuse services, Focus Youth Housing, SESC Housing First. This is in line with Housing First principles. 

Through regular home visits by Project Workers to carry out focused Key Work sessions, in line with Housing First principles.  Through arranging staff from other agencies to come to Tinteán to meet our service users where they can work on a 1:1 basis.  Through utilising Substance affected forms where there is an observation of substance affect, as we do not expect sobriety from our service users and strive for a maximum level of inclusion within our service. Through actively collaborating with Waterford Gardaí where exclusion has to happen, and our service users could be at increased risk.

Through providing formal and targeted programmes for our service users most specifically Health Life Skills and The Next Step pre-tenancy programme.  Through offering early interventions with our service users suffering mental health difficulties. Through supporting DOP appointments, liaising with GP, Psychiatrists, Brook House, CMHN and pharmacies.  Through being always pro-active in our review of support plans in line with the homeless agencies’ definitions of low, medium and high support and housing typology.  By actively encouraging service user consultation and participation in the development and provision of programmes and fundraising opportunities.    

How has being a member of The Wheel helped? 

Through communication on vital topics, information sessions and vital training for staff, to advocacy work on our behalf. The Wheel allow our voice to be heard. 

How can people support you? 

Through fundraising and donations, through voluntary work, through word of mouth and sharing our social media posts. 

Do you have any success stories to share? 

Sinead is a 60-year-old woman who used to be an entrenched rough sleeper, with a significant alcohol addiction. Sinead was struggling to maintain a tenancy. She had been engaged with the Housing First Project in Waterford  for several years, when in 2017 she began her  tenancy with Tinteán Housing Association.  At the beginning of her tenancy in Tinteán  Housing Association, Sinead had numerous  physical and mental health problems, was  struggling to control her alcohol addiction, was  actively involved with Gardai and Probation  services over crimes committed to fund her  addiction, and was the victim of domestic  abuse from her partner.  Sinead did not have contact with her children and grandchildren, which increased her feelings of isolation, shame and guilt. Sinead was housed in a Tinteán house with a wrap-around support plan in collaboration with Housing First, addiction services, probation services and mental health services.  Tinteán coordinated Sinead’s care as Case Managers, holding regular shared care reviews meetings with Jane at the centre of the process.  Sinead was supported by her shared care team: 

  1. To secure a protection order against her partner
  2. To follow up and keep track of her medical appointments (including accompaniment)
  3. To source and support her to access Counselling through various providers
  4. To stabilise her addiction
  5. To adhere to her Probation program To engage in education program
  6. To re-connect with her family
  7. Maintained tenancy and is now a long-term tenant of Tinteán  under RAS – access to housing without preconditions
  8. Stabilize her addiction with over a year of stability at present, leading to being on target for completing Probation program – recovery oriented
  9. High levels of awareness and understanding of her addiction – harm reduction
  10. Stabilize her physical health – education around medication compliance, building relationship with medical services and adequate diet
  11. Addressed mental health issues and is reconnected with her family - ongoing counseling at present
  12. Positive use of time through engagement with courses and Social Prescribing service
  13. Empowered to speak up – supported to make complaint to Garda Ombudsman, supported to change GPs and counselling services. 

Where can people find you on social media? 

Facebook: Tintean Waterford 

Tintean Housing Association