Our current Work PDF Print E-mail
Already within our first nine months Clean Slate has secured several partnerships to promote our service.
For more information about the individual partner organisations please refer to Our Partners.
NccOur first contract has been a prestigious one with Northumberland County Council Drug and Alcohol Action Team (DAAT) who have commissioned Clean Slate to provide financial inclusion support across South East Northumberland for service users who use any of the support agencies in that area. Northumberland DAAT Commissioners have recognised the importance of financial stability in the recovery path for addicts. We are providing a full financial inclusion service at Escape Family Support in Blyth where we attend on Tuesdays to see service users on an appointment basis.
Crisis_logo_jpegA lot of the work we have done has been based around a pilot we did for Crisis Skylight in Newcastle in the first nine months of 2011. During the pilot period we saw 44 Crisis members in pre-arranged hourly appointments (there were only 7 'Did Not Attend's'). Some members we saw only once whilst two service users required 6 seperate meetings to address all their issues. This hand-holding part of the service proved to be essential for them to maintain their financial stability.
Here is a summary of the outcomes acheived during the pilot: -
  • Identified nearly £13,000 in unclaimed benefits
  • Successfully claimed £3,400 in unclaimed benefits
  • Almost £20,000 debt contained in management plans
  • 2 Credit Union accounts opened – one loan awarded
  • 9 ‘better-off’ employment calculations provided – two employment applications ongoing
  • Three utility service switching made to better tariff – estimated £212 annual saving  
  • 8 form-filling assistance provided DLA & Community Care Grant, Budgeting Loans, and supporting subsequent appeals.
  • Two Crisis Loans supported via telephone
  • 10 full budgeting plans made for forthcoming year

As a result of this work Clean Slate now runs a Demolish Your Debt programme for new and existing members, which includes a OCN level 1 accreditted qualification in Financial Literacy - please see Page 5 in attached pdf http://www.crisis.org.uk/data/files/newcastle/summer_timetable2011.pdf.

Turning-Point-LogoA recent extension to the Crisis scheme is to include referrals from Turning Point if they become members at Crisis. This is another extension to the scope of Clean Slate helping vulnerable people. The Turning Point referral usually is to support someone recently released from prison who often is in a real mess regarding their entitlement to benefits and the need to sort out debts which may have been ignored for some time.

In August 2011 another extension of the service involved referrals from Bridge View Treatment Centre in Newcastle into Crisis. Again we are happy to offer support addicts and problematic drinkers with their finances.

In fact it's true to say that the demand for Clean Slate services extends beyond what we can currently offer with such limited resources. On a purely voluntary basis we have attended at other agencies too, for example NERAF in Sunderland holds a series of groups where we can go along to appointments with their members and some great work has already taken place there. Likewise we have taken on cases at Tyneside Cyrenians where we have made home visits to people in recovery who are finding it difficult to cope with life after their substance dependence.

One of our bids for funding is to support Forces For Good, who have the brilliantly named website www.aboutturn.org.uk . Of course there is huge admiration from all quarters for the work and sacrifices made by our Armed Forces but many people don't realise the challenges faced by ex-service personnel when they return to civilian life. In many instances they left home to join the Forces where most of their financial matters are handled by others on their behalf and they can finish serving their country and find themselves woefully short on financial skills and vulnerable to making the wrong financial decision.