St Mungo's royal patron visits Bristol centre for recovery

07 November 2016

His Royal Highness The Duke of Kent visited St Mungo’s today to talk with clients and staff at their renovated New Street Centre in St Judes.

Duke of KentHis Royal Highness, who has been a patron of the charity since 2009, planted a commemorative tree in the urban garden at the centre to grow alongside the beautiful wild flowers and plants that the charity’s Putting Down Roots team has cultivated over the last two years.

His visit marked the reopening of the New Street Centre following renovation and redesign. Corporate sponsors Tesco, Unite Students and Barratt homes generously supplied materials, furnishings and staff time to transform the space which has supported more than 270 clients over the last year.

Robert Napier CBE, Chair of St Mungo’s Board, who hosted this Royal visit, said: “We were very proud to welcome His Royal Highness The Duke of Kent and show him a snapshot of the services St Mungo’s offers to the people of Bristol.

“The New Street Centre is an important base for our work to end homelessness and help people rebuild their lives. This was a great opportunity for him to hear in person from clients how our services are helping them recover and move on.”

Barbara, former client and now a support worker within St Mungo’s women’s services said: “The New Street Centre and the Putting Down Roots project was the best thing I could have done to aid my recovery. It came along during a very difficult time and it helped me to focus on what I needed to do to recover. It’s wonderful that His Royal Highness The Duke came to see our services and the great work that goes on every day.”

St Mungo’s has 22 projects across the city, providing outreach to people who are rough sleeping, helping them to find a way off the streets, and offering accommodation, skills and mental health support services within the Bristol community.

The New Street Centre is home to:

• Recovery College – over 97 free workshops running termly, run with and for clients
• Floating support – working with clients who are no longer rough sleeping to ensure they maintain their well-being and upkeep of their homes. This includes setting goals and encouraging people to regain control of their life choices
• Putting Down Roots - our award winning gardener training programme enables people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness to train in gardening and horticulture
• The Sanctuary – mental health support for those at risk of self- harm and suicide or who need a safe space
• Volunteers – our clients often become volunteers for St Mungo’s, giving people a sense of purpose and vital skills for those looking to return to work.

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