Archive for April 2016

Fairlight Primary School Assembly

On Tuesday 26 April the Heritage Project Officer visited Fairlight Primary School in Brighton to deliver an assembly about homelessness in the city.

Fairlight Primary School Assembly120 students in Years 3 – 6 learnt about what it might be like to be homeless by imagining that they had to sleep on the hard, concrete school playground. They discussed some of the problems they might face regarding comfort, shelter, weather conditions, noise and security. They also heard from William, a former client of First Base, who had written a day diary for the students, to share with them some of the realities of not having somewhere to live.

To explore who can become homeless the students viewed photographs of eight people, including celebrities, and tried to guess who had experienced homelessness. The students learnt that all eight people had been homeless at some point in their lives, and that homelessness can happen to all sorts of people; anyone in fact. The Heritage Project Officer spoke about causes of homelessness, including family breakdown, debt, illness and addiction problems.

The students also considered which items someone would need to stay safe, warm and dry by guessing what was in a client’s rucksack. Among those items, the students correctly guessed a sleeping bag, clothes, food and water, a toothbrush and toothpaste, a towel and an umbrella.

The Heritage Project Officer finished the assembly by speaking about how BHT helps people who are vulnerable in Brighton and Hove, and how the students can support First Base Day Centre’s work by talking to friends and family about the realities of homelessness.

Fairlight Primary School’s newspaper club, which publishes ‘Fairlight Times’, will be following-up the assembly with an article about homelessness in Brighton and Hove. The students will interview a former client of First Base Day Centre about their experiences and memories of rough sleeping.

Little Green Pig Street Stories Project

littlegreenpiglogo_W135In January BHT Heritage began working on a 10-week partnership project with Little Green Pig, a creative writing charity in Brighton and Hove.

The project, Street Stories, brings together 20 young writers from various schools in Brighton and Hove, with clients and former clients of BHT who have experienced street homelessness in the city. The children, who are aged between 9 and 11 years old, will use these experiences to create their own stories about characters facing rough sleeping.

Little Green Pig Article Image w300The stories will challenge the public perception of homelessness and will be made into a digital audio story walk through the streets of the city. The final piece will be launched for the public during Brighton’s Fringe festival in May 2016, and will be shared with local schools.

The project started with an introduction workshop, led by BHT’s Heritage Officer, which saw the children exploring what it’s like to experience street homelessness, why someone might become homeless in the first place, who might become homeless, what essentials someone might need to stay safe and well, and where people can access support in Brighton and Hove.

At the end of the session the children created questions for BHT clients and ex-clients, to learn about where they chose to sleep, their daily routine, how they stayed safe, which services they went to for food, and how they kept clean.

The group will be involved in recording sound effects and mapping a route for the audio walk, which will incorporates their stories and the voices of BHT clients and ex-clients. They will also visit First Base Day Centre to learn about the facilities provided for people experiencing homelessness in Brighton and Hove today.

Little Green Pig has inspired over 1,300 seven – 18 year olds since it started in 2008:

Click here to learn more about the work of the Little Green Pig Project