In accordance with the charism of St. Vincent de Paul, who sought the poor at places where they were, Depaul Croatia has been implementing outreach program for the fourth year in a row, which is systematic support to the homeless outside shelters who spend their nights outdoors, in abandoned buildings, cars, parks or other places not intended for human habitation. Through the outreach program, we provide food, hygiene, basic medical care, counselling, holistic help to street homeless people and help them achieve social rights. During 2020 we also developed social mentoring and psychosocial support services, as well as regular daily outreach that includes home visits and escorting clients to various institutions.
In the past year, 70 street homeless have used our outreach services. We provided these services at the certain meeting points in the city centre of Rijeka and encouraged them to continue to become clients of the Day Centre for the Homeless Haven House and so achieve holistic help and move gradually out of the street. Therefore, over 70% of street homeless people continued to receive services at Haven House. Thanks to the implementation of outreach services, we regularly define the number of street homeless people in the city of Rijeka and by systematically working to eradicate homelessness, we have an insight into reductions in the number of street homeless people. Considering the impact of outreach services in 2020, which is linked to the work of Haven House, many good results were achieved for our clients: almost a half of the overall number found accommodation (emergency accommodation, shelter or private accommodation). The other move ons include getting jobs, achieving social rights and getting IDs, receiving medical care and starting hospital treatment. Also, a number of the outreach services clients Depaul Croatia’s H-garden project and the rehabilitation program to support homeless alcohol addicts “Healed for Freedom”.
These results are great shifts in the lives of our clients, and systematically monitoring the life of users through outreach services, we witness many small, first steps such as regular visits to Haven House, maintaining personal hygiene after prolonged neglect, adopting work habits, socialising and building trust with others. people, involvement in the regular activities of the Day Centre Haven House. Persistent work, patience and not giving up on a man in need allow our clients who use outreach services to slowly make numerous steps forward in solving their homelessness problem.